From the Styrian mountains to the shores of the Adriatic Sea, last weekend saw Infinity drivers fighting at the front in both single seaters and GT championships. Putting in some stellar performances and battling back from arduous blows, our talented squad graced each step of the podium. Join us as we look back on an exciting weekend’s racing…
Fanatec GT World Challenge Europe Powered by AWS Sprint Cup – Misano
Frank Bird & Nicolai Kjærgaard
Over in Italy, Frank Bird and Nicolai Kjærgaard were back in action for the GT World Challenge Europe Sprint Cup at Misano World Circuit.
Despite having to retire from Race 1 whilst running 2nd in Silver Cup (8th overall) after suffering a drivability issue. Race 2 proved to be a true reversal of fortune for Frank Bird and his teammate Ryuichiro Tomita.
Taking to the track on Sunday morning for the second qualifying session of the weekend, allowed the team to start fresh and hunt down a strong finish once again. With sharp pace, the duo earned a promising starting position of 10th (2nd in Silver Cup), putting them in good stead to fight for podium honours.
Firing off from tenth on the grid, teammate Tomita had the car up to 7th as he peeled into the pits to hand over to Frank for his stint. Ready to follow up from his sensational performance last time out in Zandvoort, Frank got to work and climbed to 4th on the road. Holding this position with such strong pit stops from the Team WRT squad, Frank was in an incredible position to challenge for an overall podium. Taking centre stage in the closing moments of the race as he lapped right behind fellow Team WRT entry in the fight for 3rd place.
Crossing the line 4th overall, Frank took the Silver Cup win, earning his first victory of the season to add to a string of podiums.
“Overall, it’s been a fantastic day for the team, with a 1-3 overall and our first win in the Silver Cup. The pit stop was perfect, and I could undercut a few positions. I’m very happy with my performance after the disappointment of race one. Thanks to my team, our sponsors and of course my dad for making it happen, it is very good and very encouraging ahead of Spa.” – Frank Bird
Meanwhile Nicolai also had a weekend of two halves, following a retirement from Race 1 after an unfortunate tangle incurred damage whilst running in a strong position. Turning attention to Sunday’s potential, together with his teammate Tuomas Tujula, Nicolai managed to improve on their 6th place qualifying position. Finishing a hard fought Race 2 in a very creditable 13th overall and 5th in Silver class.
Both Frank and Nicolai now turn their focus to one of the biggest races on the GT calendar, the 24 Hours of Spa, which gets underway on 31 July.
Praising a strong weekend in GT, Gary Catt, Director of Infinity Sports Management:
“What a weekend for Frank, he’s continually proving himself in GT racing so he really deserves to earn his first sprint win of the season and I’m sure it won’t be the last. Nicolai has the talent and pace, so it’s great to see him bounce back from the disappointment in Race 1, fighting his way up to finish P5 in Race 2 was a strong comeback.”
FIA Formula 3 – Red Bull Ring
Olli Caldwell, Matteo Nannini & Logan Sargeant
Round 3 of the FIA Formula 3 season proved to be a thriller for our squad of talented drivers. With thrills and spills from beginning to end, it was one that saw podiums, points and heartbreak.
Olli Caldwell had another strong weekend, which saw him fighting at the sharp end of the field, to claim two podium finishes and points in every race.
Logan Sargeant started from reverse pole in the opening race of the weekend, with fellow Infinity Sports Management driver Matteo Nannini alongside him. With a front row lockout we were certainly in for a thrilling race, which had all the marks to expect from a FIA Formula 3 race.
Blasting off the line the pair immediately went into combat, with Matteo just managing to get the better start to take the lead into Turn 1. As they continued, Logan found his way back in front. But the fight was still on as they changed positions at almost every turn, but always leaving ample racing room between them. Battling hard with Novalak in third, the trio went three-wide, which Matteo came out on top with Novalak moving up to second.
With the battle for the lead continuing, Logan fell back to 5th unable to defend against the Prema powered cars. But drama saw Matteo narrowly clip the back of Novalak during a fight for the lead and threw the pair of them into the gravel.
Running strong in 4th, Olli Caldwell made his way through the chaos to take 2nd, followed by Logan in 3rd. Crossing the line to take his first podium of the year, Logan was awarded for his strong performance, but unfortunately was one of many drivers held to account by the stewards for track limits. Which saw him suffer a 5s penalty which dropped him down to P15. Whilst Olli’s pace at the front meant he had pulled a large enough gap to maintain his podium.
From there, with further points collected in Race 2, Olli went on to score another respectable podium in Race 3. Fighting from 8th on the grid, battling hard with his teammate and title rival, the British driver powered his way to 3rd place.
With heartbreak for both Logan and Matteo in Race 1, both put in another strong performance in the final race. Back battling at the front, Matteo forged forward from 11th on the grid, to cross the line in 5th. Whilst Logan scored points after a torrid weekend of incidents and penalties with a P8 finish.
Scoring two podiums Olli Caldwell added a healthy haul of points to his championship campaign and impressed in front of crowds of fans and the paddock alike.
Speaking of the weekend, Gary Catt, Director of Infinity Sports Management:
“It was a great weekend for Olli, he definitely showed his potential and built on what he’s learned, it was great to see him back on the podium and earn a good haul of points. He’s definitely in the right place to push for the win so I’m sure he’ll be fighting at the front next time out”
“But it was a tricky weekend for Logan, he did an amazing job in Race 1, so it’s a shame the penalty took the podium away. Similarly for Matteo, he’s continually in the fight each race, so it’s unfortunate he missed out on the win. But that’s racing, I’m sure he’ll be back challenging once again.”
FIA Formula 3 squad will be back in action, when racing resumes at the Hungarian Grand Prix on the 30th July–1st August.