Third race meeting at Imola. Alex rates this track as one of his favourites as it’s very technical and with good overtaking opportunities.
A solid first qualifying session ended with Alex in 9th position and 14th in session 2. With cars split by hundredths of a second minor changes have a big impact on the result.
It was a pleasing outcome in the extremely close sessions and one which better aligns with the speed we’ve seen in test sessions. Unfortunately a 10 position grid penalty from Monza put Alex on grid 19 for the first heat, complicated even further by a stall on the grid which had Alex around 5 seconds behind the full 27 car field at the end of lap 1. However a great fight back with many passes saw Alex finish in 14th position.
Starting in 14th on a track in race 2, the track had some wet patches off line from overnight rain and Alex put in a great charge and crossed the line 7th. His first points for the season! Very exciting although certainly given his excellent speed he would have expected them earlier ….. accumulating experience is certainly character building!
Race 3 ended very disappointingly on the 1st lap. In the process of passing Alex was squeezed and contact took both drivers out. A difficult to comprehend stewards ruling ended with another 10 position grid penalty for Mugello. Despite the setback the team took great confidence into the Mugello round given Alex’s speed.
Alex has just completed a full program of tests over 3 days in Valencia, Spain, in conjunction with many other teams from throughout Europe. Interestingly there was Michael Schumacher’s son testing his F4 as well as Adrian Newey’s son who is having a go at a driving career.
Due to the constantly changing weather conditions Alex was able to try a number of setup and tyre variations that will be very useful for the future. After being very fast in the wet, as the track conditions dried Alex and his engineer Ruggero worked very well together to up the pace in the dry to a very competitive level.
Next year’s championship looks
very promising although extremely tough given Alex’s lack of experience in cars and the very experienced and quick competition.
With this test we close off for 2014. We hope to have exciting developments for next year’s racing plans soon.
Merry Christmas to all and may we all have a memorable new year!
What turned out to be a very difficult weekend weather wise, with fog, pouring rain, showers, sun and constantly varying track conditions (felt like Tasmania…), ended with a very positive outcome for Alex.
This was Alex’s first complete and intensive test session with 75 laps completed on Saturday, including a 30 minute session in the wet, and 62 laps completed on Sunday, after practice was delayed for over 3 hours due to fog.
The two largest teams, Prema and Euronova, were also there with their high profile drivers from all over the world including Ferrari’s new Driver Academy recruit from China. This allowed us to have a good measure of where he stands compared with the best.
The good news was that the team worked very well and Alex’s times were always very competitive and they make everyone in the team confident about the future. Lot’s more work to do so Alex and Team Torino Motorsport are off to Valencia, Spain, for 3 days test testing on the 15th, 16th and 17th.
Training for Alex’s next intensive test sessions in Italy and Spain are going well. Training to increase his upper body strength includes regular gym sessions and weekends in the kart. On the 2nd of December he’ll fly back to Italy with 2 days testing planned in Vallelunga (near Roma) on the 6th and 7th, and 3 days scheduled for Valencia (Spain) on the 15th, 16th and 17th. A number of F4 teams are expected to be there so it will be a good chance to see how much work is still to do!