The Euroformula Open championship traveled to the Red Bull Ring Formula One track in Austria for rounds 11 and 12 of the season.
Every story starts by setting the scene and in our case the context is probably as important as the outcome. Cam Das’ first ever appearance at the Red Bull Ring came on the week after the race in Hungary, requiring the team to go directly to Austria resulting in no time to respond to the issues discovered in Hungary. Moreover, some of the Team Motopark Euroformula engineers, including Cam’s own Niki Laa, were committed to the Japanese Super Formula round at Fuji that same weekend. Although the replacement engineers were very experienced, some of the electronics issues in the gearbox that hampered Cam in Budapest, once again appeared at Red Bull Ring.
The weekend didn’t benefit from a Thursday test, thus limiting track time, and Cam spent the better part of Friday's 2 sessions working with the team on solving the electronics issues rather than learning the new track. Saturday’s qualifier was a testament to this, qualifying 11th.
Race 1 was truly entertaining, and after a spectacular start, Cam found himself in the top part of the pack, marching to P6 as the race was starting to look promising. Unfortunately two drivers collided, one pushing the other into Cam, resulting in a damaged front wing. The young American had to pit so that the team could fix the damages and once again was relegated to the back of the pack. Without hesitation, Cam charged forward and effectively used the race as a test session, producing a respectful result, finishing in the points with a solid 9thplace.
Going into Sunday, a mechanical hiccup resulted in Cam’s gearing to be off in the second qualifying session. And what seemed to be his chance of making everything right on the Sunday, disappeared in the rev limiter of the 6thgear. The result was last place in qualifying and a “make or break” moment in Sunday’s main event.
Not giving up, Cam once again drove hard in the second race and fought his way from the back of the pack, finishing 8th and successfully gathering points from both races in Austria.
“I was disappointed after the second quali session as I knew I had done a good job in race 1 and had the track figured out for the Sunday event. The car felt good and the balance was “there” for me to be able to charge to the front of the grid, but the gearing issue put an end to that. I stayed focused and I did my best in the race. It’s not always about being perfect and on pole, but also about making the most out of a difficult situation and I believe you can’t win if you’re not mentally prepared to fight back when you get in trouble. I had fun in the races and I am sorry Red Bull Ring didn’t show our true potential, but I am very much looking forward to the next race, at Silverstone.” said Cam.
The Euroformula Open races at Silverstone will take place on the 7th and 8th of September. Cam Das would like to thank his partners FREEDOM powered by Data Federal, Opti-coat, Sportline Management, Hunt Valley Horsepower, Druck and Visceral, Autobahn, Racing DNA and of course the Motopark Academy for believing in him and supporting his dream of competing in Formula One.