Euroformula Open | Review: Budapest Obstacles Did Not Stop Das
The Hungarian round of Euroformula Open was filled with spectacle in Race 1, drivers in unusual places in Race 2 and lots of water on track in Race 3. All of this did not disrupt too much the pre-established orders, though.
The Championship Leader Cameron Das | © 2018 GT Sport
In Qualifying a lot of laps were defined not legal by the stewards as the track limits were disrespected more than once. Drivex’s Enzo Scionti (USA) struggle to find grip at the start of the session as he spun at the exit of the chicane. Meanwhile, his fellow countryman – Motopark’s Jak Crawford – was always improving his laptimes by being each time more than half a second faster than anyone else. At two minutes to the end, the American got on Double R’s Josh Mason (UK)’s way - who was on a flier - while slowly preparing for his next lap, but the Red Bull Academy driver got away with that. He got pole at the end, with his team-mate and second fellow countryman Cameron Das closing in three tenths behind. The two first-timers Van Amersfoort’s Cem Bölükbaşı (TUR) and Drivex’s Joshua Duerksen (PY) already looked to be both in great shape by putting on a nice fight for the top-5, with the Turkish man clinching it and the Paraguayan ending P7.
Results from Qualy | © 2018 GT Sport
Crawford sandwiched by Das (inside) & Foster (outside) | © 2018 GT Sport
Race 1 was characterised by an unbelievable crash between possible title contenders: in respective order from inside to outside Das, Crawford and CryptoTower’s Louis Foster (UK) went three wide into turn 1 and the latter one clipped Crawford’s front wing with his right rear tire, falling down the order. Crawford tried to get back on track after replacing his front wing, but damage was too much and had to eventually retire his car. Not much later, Cam Das started to suffer problems as he went wide twice consecutively: first at turn 5 and then at the chicane ending up in the gravel. His brakes were failed. The just-arrived Bölükbaşı was amazingly leading the race in front of his team-mate Rafael Villagómez (MEX) and the other newcomer Duerksen. These two started a nice duel for P2 in the last stages, but the Paraguayan was too far from getting Villagómez. Bölükbaşı eventually won the race in front of these two and the three drivers who had previously won a race were all down the order. Foster then also got a 5-seconds' time penalty for a jump start.
Results from Race 1 | © 2018 GT Sport
Race 2 saw CryptoTower’s Nazim Azman (MYS) on reversed-grid pole but he did not get the most of the situation as Van Amersfoort’s Casper Stevenson (UK) got off the line better than him. Many penalties were then applied as both the Double R’s drivers Mason and Zdenek Chovanec (POR) and jumped the start and were added five seconds to their race time for that. Three seconds were instead given to Crawford, who was trying to re-bounce after being sandwiched in Race 1 but went over the track limits at turn 11 too many times. He started his race together with Das on the last row of the grid but as he was going up the order, his team-mate was doing something curious: going for fastest laps while remaining last and not getting too close to Scionti who was penultimate. That seemed to paid off, too, as - with the fastest lap of the race - he got Pole for Race 3. Das then closed in just at the end and took P10 from both him and his team-mate Keszthelyi Vivien who this weekend has enjoyed racing in her home country. Stevenson took a surprise win, his first in this category in front of Azman and Race 1 winner Bölükbaşı.
Results from Race 2 | © 2018 GT Sport
The weather situation changed impressively between morning and afternoon, as heavy rain was falling down when Race 3 started - behind the safety car, due to the conditions. As the Safety Car was called in before the start of the lap 5, Foster had already gone off at the exit of turn 10 and then got back a couple of places behind. The green flag lasted less than a lap with Mason ending in the gravel in the exact same point and bringing the Safety Car out again. Right after Mason’s car had been removed - very impressively – Keszthelyi Vivien crashed there again. As Das said after the race the water accumulation in that point of the track was pretty evident. The Safety Car got in and the racing re-started. For Foster this race looked like a matter of all-or-nothing: after being wide in the first stages, he was recovering like a madman by overtaking first Chovanec and then Bölükbaşı, fighting very hard with the Turkish for P6. Crawford tried to put pressure on Azman but it was not enough to steal the last place on the podium to the Malaysian. Cam Das came back to domination-business with his Race 3 win in front of Villagómez and Azman.
Results from Race 3 | © 2018 GT Sport
Cameron Das | © 2018 GT Sport
This is what Das had to say after Race 3: “I’m really, really happy with that result, we’ve had a really challenging weekend, had to replace the chassis on Friday, there was some tuning differences we needed to make with the new chassis in qualy so we weren’t right there in qualy, and then we had a brake failure in race one while we were leading the race, so I’ve kind of had it all so far. But it’s really, really good to be back [at the front].” This is what he added about Race 3’s conditions: “In the beginning, it was really, really difficult. Turn 11 especially, even when we were behind the safety car we were aquaplaning, even at those low speeds. So I was a bit nervous on the first lap, being the first one to go through at full speed. I think I nearly went off, to be quite honest, but kept it on the track and just put in the solid laptimes.”
Casper Stevenson | © 2018 GT Sport
Race 2’s surprise winner Casper Stevenson said instead: “Great to get my first F3 win in Hungary last weekend. Still could have maximised the weekend more on my part but after looking like it would be hard to finish the races physically, to come away as the second highest points scorer from the weekend, we can be happy with the performance!”
These are the up-to-date standings:
Drivers' Standings | © sebmotors.info 2021
Constructors' Standings | © sebmotors.info 2021
Rookies' Standings | © sebmotors.info 2021
You can watch the highlights on these links:
-Race 1: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0Kb4E60oy8I ;
-Race 2: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9yPcGk4rxtU ;
-Race 3: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IkHkyALYiyY .
Next round it will be at Imola, Italy on July 24th.
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