Chris van der Drift super quick in Oschersleben ! Oschersleben, 24 April 2006 - The first Formula Renault 2.0 race weekend resulted in a fantastic performance by New Zealand race car driver Chris van der Drift. The driver, previously from ...
Chris van der Drift super quick in Oschersleben !
Oschersleben, 24 April 2006 - The first Formula Renault 2.0 race weekend resulted in a fantastic performance by New Zealand race car driver Chris van der Drift. The driver, previously from Hamilton NZ, showed great potential during the weekends racing in the Northern European Championship (NEC) that was held on the 3.6 kilometre long Motopark circuit at Oschersleben in Germany. In the first race he finished on top of the podium, and in the second race showed the ability needed in passing fellow competitors.
Immediately on the first day van der Drift was quick. In a field of 22 drivers, he finished Friday free practice as fastest. Also in qualifying, held on Saturday at midday, his times were only bettered by team-mate Kasper Andersen in the first qualifying session. At the end of the second session however he was quickest giving him pole position for Sunday's race.
Chris van der Drift after qualifying: For the first qualifying session we altered the setup from what we had during Friday testing and as a result it meant I couldn't do any better than second fastest. In the short break between qualifying sessions we changed the setup back. This resulted in my first pole in a Formula Renault car and in my first race weekend in this class! I was naturally very happy!
The first race of the championship was on the programme late on Saturday afternoon. After a solid race start, van der Drift fitted in between Danish team-mate Andersen and in front of Dutch team-mate Xavier Maassen, with both Andersen and van der Drift closely battling out in front during the following 17 laps. However on the 18th (and last) lap they came upon two drivers about to be lapped, causing problems for both but worse for Andersen as at the same time he developed a mechanical problem. Van der Drift grabbed the opportunity to seize the lead and take the chequered flag just in front of Maassen who had benefited from the lapped cars and was able to close the gap slightly to van der Drift. < br>Van der Drift had pole position for the race on Sunday, however he was not able to convert that to another race win. In the first left hander after the start van der Drift found himself off the racing line with less grip and went into a spin leaving the track but fortunately having no contact. He rejoined at the back of the pack chasing those in front and climbed back up to a fine 10th position considering the circumstances.
Chris van der Drift after the 2nd race: At the start I had a bit too much wheel spin and as a result Albuquerque could get inside me by the first corner. I was on the right-hand side on the dirty part of the track and that didn't go very well. After my spin I had to let the entire field past and that was heart destroying. I was able to drive back to 10th so at least I was able to get some points. The team did a fantastic job this weekend and I want to thank them a lot. Now I am looking forward to Zolder for the first Eurocup race, hopefully I can repeat my first race win there with my team!
Next weekend (29-30 April) is the first weekend of the World Series by Renault Eurocup Championship Formula Renault 2.0 to be held at the Belgian circuit of Zolder.