Fantastic third weekend of racing sees rookie earn first championship points and first top ten finish of the season St. Catharines, Ontario - Gianmarco Raimondo, Canadian formula car racer, completed a fantastic weekend of racing at the exciting...
Fantastic third weekend of racing sees rookie earn first championship points and first top ten finish of the season
St. Catharines, Ontario - Gianmarco Raimondo, Canadian formula car racer, completed a fantastic weekend of racing at the exciting and historic Imola Circuit. Through six on track sessions Raimondo and the Team Lucidi crew worked hard to stay on top of the changing track conditions. While not yet halfway through the sixteen-race schedule, Raimondo is making his mark in the rookie title and now seeing himself on the championship charts.
In Friday free practice Gmo clocked through in session one in the 16th spot with a time of 1:44.199. The team made some nice changes and Raimondo went to seventh in the second session with a time of 1:43.294. The solid practice runs set the Raimondo up for a strong run in Saturday qualifying. As the time qualifying session progressed Raimondo didn't find the pace he was looking for and would settle for 16th putting him outside row eight for the standing start.
"Qualifying was not the best for me. Adjusting to the different rubber and grip level threw my limits off a bit, and by the time I finally re-established everything, it was too late unfortunately," commented Raimondo after the morning session. "The lap I did however, was somewhat consistent to my practice lap that put me in seventh, so I'd like to see it as something positive."
In race one it was a hard fought battle from the start as Raimondo looked to move forwarding heavy traffic and keep the car under him. Making steady progress was the order of the day and in the closing stages the 19-year-old driver had made his way up to 12th position. Running in tight formation looking for more spots before the checkerd flag, the car directly in front of Raimondo spun on the last corner causing Raimondo to check up and allowing the two drivers behind to pass on the straight away. At the flag it was Gmo crossing the line in 14th spot as completing all the scheduled laps.
"Race 1 was a bit unfortunate for me, even though I gained positions from where I started, the end of the race was unlucky," continued Raimondo. "The start was good, the pace was good, and I gained positions throughout the race. Out of all the situations I could control, the race was quite good."
Sunday round six competition would be one of best races this season for the rookie driver. The race would go very well from the start with Gmo grabbing spots early on as he worked traffic. Moving up 10 positions in the first 2 laps starting from 16th showed that the car was good and the team was on it's game. At the line it was Gmo finishing in eighth to crack the top ten and secure some championship points.
"Near the end of the race is when everything started to become difficult," commented Gmo. "The rear tires were starting to overheat a bit from the constant battling with other drivers, and the heat started to take effect."
Raimondo was able to collect some valuable points and now sits in 16th in the overall championship points standings and third in the Rookie Championship chase. Gmo has score rookie points in all six rounds of the Formula 3 Italia series.
"Finishing well in the points shows great foresight for the races to come. Mugello is next on the list and judging from our results this weekend, I have a feeling it's just going to get better."
Up next is the fourth weekend being held at the Mugello Circuit, which will host rounds seven and eight on July 25th and 26th.