RAMEZ AZZAM TURNS UP THE HEAT IN HUNGARY BUDAPEST, JUNE 15 2009 - After last week's WEC Formula Renault 2.0 spell at Spa-Francorchamps, Ramez Azzam stayed on track this weekend in Hungary, as he enjoyed a guest appearance in the Eurocup Formula...
RAMEZ AZZAM TURNS UP THE HEAT IN HUNGARY
BUDAPEST, JUNE 15 2009 - After last week's WEC Formula Renault 2.0 spell at Spa-Francorchamps, Ramez Azzam stayed on track this weekend in Hungary, as he enjoyed a guest appearance in the Eurocup Formula Renault 2.0 championship in Budapest. In qualifying, the SG Formula driver missed out on a top grid position after failing to get a good lap together, even though his sector times indicated he could have been aiming for a top ten starting position. Having to start both races from the midfield, Azzam charged his way through the field on Saturday to finish in a respectable 9th position, but had to adapt to a more defending strategy on Sunday (P12), after being clipped from behind in the first corner.
FREE PRACTISES AND QUALIFYING
With four free practice sessions available on Thursday and Friday, Ramez Azzam completed a busy program including trying out some different aero and mechanical set-ups ahead of the decisive qualifying and Superpole session on Saturday morning. On used tyres, Azzam was continuously in the top ten during all sessions, but struggled a bit while maximizing his performance on new rubber. In Saturday's qualifying sessions, the Emirati driver seemed to have found a good solution for this issue and recorded fast sector times throughout these sessions, but as he didn't manage to put them all together in one lap, he had to line up in 17th position for both races unfortunately.
ROUND 05 & 06 EUROCUP FORMULA RENAULT 2.0
On Saturday afternoon, Azzam enjoyed a blistering start in the opening race in order to climb up from 17th position at the grid to 11th position at the end of the first lap! Also in the remainder of the 16-lap race, Azzam was in 'attack mode' but only gained two more positions as Albert Costa and Nigel Melker retired at a later stage. By finishing in ninth position however, Azzam was boosted with confidence about his chances for the second race on Sunday.
Azzam's hopes of repeating his world class performance from the day before, vanished soon after the start of Sunday's second race as he was clipped from behind by another competitor. Even though his car was visually only slightly damaged, the 17-year old racer suffered handling problems throughout the remainder of the race. In contrary to Saturday's race, Azzam was forced to focus on his mirrors instead of charging the drivers ahead of him. After another 16 hard fought laps, Azzam eventually crossed the finish line in 12th position.
RAMEZ AZZAM: "Even though I didn't manage to maximize things in qualifying, I'm still pretty upbeat about this weekend. Especially on Saturday I managed to put in a really strong race in which I gained 8 positions in total. I intended to repeat this on Sunday, but after another driver hit me from behind, I had to change my strategy and goals for this race. Nevertheless, I'm satisfied with the pace I've shown all weekend, which encourages me for my next race in the Euro cup in a fortnight on Silverstone, especially as we plan to conduct a one-day test at Valdeviennes (FRA) beforehand."