Nightmarish Weekend For Guimaraes At Norisring‏ F3

Norisring street circuit in Germany delivered little in the way of good fortune for FIA Formula 3 European Championship team Double R Racing over the weekend, 28th/29th June, with a series of incidents for Felipe Guimaraes blighting all three encounters.Going into the sixth race meeting of the season off the back of a season-best top eight performance last weekend at Spa-Francorchamps, hopes were high of a continuation of similar success despite the Norisring offering a completely different challenge to the high-speed Belgian track.Round 16 on Saturday morning was over almost before it started for the unfortunate Guimaraes when he was caught-up in the aftermath of a collision at the exit of the notorious first corner. Having made a good getaway from the 11th row of the grid, as the Double R driver rounded the tight hairpin a rival’s car smashed into his Dallara’s front-right wheel leading to immediate retirement.Determined to secure higher grid slots, therefore reducing the risk of a repeat of the race one dramas, for rounds 17 and 18 in the second qualifying session on Saturday afternoon, the Woking team’s driver unfortunately had to settle for 22nd and 21st respectively.If race one on Saturday was bitterly disappointing, the first of Sunday’s races – which started on a drying track with a realistic threat of further rain – turned into a complete nightmare for Guimaraes when a tangle on lap one led to another retirement.Round 18 later in the day was a definite improvement, for the first nine laps at least. On a damp track, the Double R driver managed to avoid any opening lap dramas and following an incident which accounted for several cars in the midfield, Guimaraes moved into the top 15 and then 14th prior to the appearance of the Safety Car.When racing resumed on the seventh tour, the South American held 13th position – due to Nicholas Latifi entering the pits – but a couple of laps later his race was over when he ran straight on at the hairpin under braking.“It’s not been a great weekend, to say the least”, said Double R Racing team principal Anthony ‘Boyo’ Hieatt, “Qualifying at a track like the Norisring is so important, it’s such a tight and twisty track – you have to be in the first half of the grid to try and avoid incidents as much as you can.“Felipe didn’t have much luck in the races this weekend, the third race was obviously the best of the three but he just made a small mistake under braking and that was it. We haven’t had the best of experiences and that’s especially frustrating after such a positive outing at Spa last time out.”Two weeks from now, Double R Racing will be back in action for rounds 19, 20 and 21 of the FIA Formula 3 European Championship which will take place at Moscow Raceway in Russia over the weekend 12th/13th July.Provisional 2014 FIA Formula 3 European Championship Standings (after Rd18):22nd Felipe Guimaraes, 5pts

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