Trident increases rookie championship lead
Trident continues to gain positive momentum in the Formula Regional European Championship as it placed two drivers in the top 10 of both races at Spa-Francorchamps, earning more valuable points that helped it to trim the gap to P5 in the team championship to only six points.
With the double points zone result achieved in both races at the legendary venue, Trident extended its streak of positive results. Making its debut in the highly-competitive Formula Regional European Championship by Alpine, the team, led by Maurizio Salvadori, hit the points zone on all seven venues encountered so far. Only in two races out of 14, there were no Trident drivers in the points zone.
The weekend at Spa started with excellent premises and a clear potential that emerged right from free practice. In the first qualifying session, held on Thursday evening, Tim Tramnitz delivered P3 in Group A, while Leonardo Fornaroli was fourth in Group B. Roman Bilinski, on the other hand, ended up sixth in the first group.
The second qualifying session was held Friday morning and set the starting grid for the first race later on the same day. Fornaroli got a P6 start, while Bilinski and Tramnitz took P11 and P13 on the grid respectively.
In race 1, the 17-year-old from Piacenza immediately moved to P5, but in the middle part of the race, he was unable to keep up with the leading pack, losing three positions to find himself down to P8. In the closing stages, he went on the counterattack, overtaking another driver to move up to seventh. Tramnitz also got on a good comeback from P13 to P9, but while he was about to make a further step, a red flag eventually put an end to the race. Following the disqualification of another driver, Fornaroli jumped to P6, Tramnitz was promoted to eighth, while Bilinski came close to the points zone, finishing P11.
In Race 2, Tramnitz started from P5, which he held for the whole day, leading the rookie competition and eventually winning the class. Right behind him, Fornaroli got up to P2 in the category with a brilliant move on another driver and ended up in his teammate’s slipstream. The safety car froze the running order, handing Trident another rookie 1-2. On the other hand, Bilinski couldn’t confirm the earlier momentum as he lost some spots down to P19 overall.
With the results achieved at Spa-Francorchamps, Trident trimmed down the gap to P5 in the team standings, while Fornaroli increased his advantage at the top of the rookie championship. Tramnitz is still third in class but is now eyeing a move to P2.
Roman Bilinski: “We had a lot of potential in qualifying 2, I was P4 until the last lap but then I was overtaken by two other drivers. It’s a shame, but starting the race in P11 I had a mega first lap and moved to P7. Honestly, from there I just had no pace. I struggled with tyre degradation and I fell back five positions. On Sunday I had a difficult race and after a good start, every lap I was getting passed by two cars on the straight, so maybe we had an issue. We go onto the next round and hope it will be better”.
Tim Tramnitz: “My qualy for race 1 was not so good. We struggled a little bit in the traffic and I was not really able to put everything together. We made good improvements on the car for the race and I made up some positions on lap 1. Then had a small battle with Roman. I just tried to use my push-to-pass as well as I could and we end up P8. It’s a shame for the red flag because I saved a push to pass for the last lap and I was very close to the car in front so I could finish P7. In race 2 I started from P5. My start was quite nice but then the safety car come out immediately. The first three laps after the safety car, we were quite ok I would say, but then I started to struggle, especially with the rear tyres, and the pace started to drop a little bit. I was a bit lucky with the safety car this time but I think we really deserved the rookie win and I’m very happy with it”.
Leonardo Fornaroli: "We had two good qualifying sessions, finishing fourth and third in Group B. Unfortunately I was not able to show the real potential I had, the car was really competitive and I also felt very good driving. I made some small mistakes and couldn't put the lap together in Q1, while this morning because of traffic I only had one lap available. In race 1 I had a good start, making it to P5, but then I couldn't keep a good pace. I lost a couple of positions, but then limited the damage by overtaking Haverkort. The start of race 2 was positive as well. Right after the safety car, I made one position and with a clear track I put up a great pace, catching Tramnitz and Tangavelou. I was feeling really well and I was about to attack Tramnitz, but the safety car called the race early. However, I got another rookie P2 and very valuable points that make me increase my lead in class.”