22 July 2013

Storming drive in Austria

Jazeman Jaafar put on an impressive display of his racing skills at this weekend’s round of the Formula Renault 3.5 Series held at Red Bull Ring in Austria. Starting from the back of the grid for the first of the two races the young Malaysian driver stormed through to a points-paying 10th place at the chequered flag. In the final race he showed strong pace to finish in 13th place.



The PETRONAS Talent Programme driver had settled in during the practice sessions and was running well. However his qualifying for the first race did not go according to plan after he spun off the track early in the session and was unable to re-join, so lost the track time he needed to set a good time. Starting from the back for the race is always tough, but Jazeman showed just how resilient he is, as he made up seven places as the lights went out and then began chasing down his rivals. By mid distance Jazeman had gained ground to tenth place, a position he held to the end of the race.

He said after the race, “It’s not good to be starting so far back in a race as the chances of getting caught up in incidents at the start is so much higher, but I managed to avoid this and leapfrogged a few cars in my charge. It’s really good experience to be in the thick of the field and make your way through with lots of overtaking, while avoiding other drivers incidents and it makes for a very exciting race for me. I was so determined to finish in the points that I took every chance I could to move up and given a few more laps I reckon I could have continued further, but I’m happy to have reached 10th place and another championship point. “

Qualifying for the second race showed that Jazeman had a strong pace with 13th fastest lap putting him on the seventh row of the grid. At the start he made up a place, but in the ensuing battle dropped down the order. He fought back but in a second battle fell back again. Never one to give up, Jazeman went on the attack and climbed from 16th place back up to 13th by the chequered flag.

He reviewed the race saying, “Running in mid-field was very competitive and I had to defend and attack throughout the race.  I was playing cat and mouse with my rivals for much of the race, sometimes losing out, other times gaining back positions, so it was very challenging both mentally and physically. By the end I was in my grid slot, but I would have preferred to be in the top ten.”

Of his weekend overall Jazeman concluded, “The aim of moving up to Formula Renault 3.5 Series was to give me a very competitive race environment and it’s certainly doing that. I’ve spent a weekend overtaking and learning more and more about the skills to do this well and make the moves stick. It’s been fun, challenging and exhilarating. I’m learning so much, it’s all great experience. “

Jazeman has an eight week break until the next Formula Renault 3.5 Series round later in September.

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