2022 EURONASCAR CALENDAR :
Brand hatch, United Kingdom
The British Grand Prix is over and the first podium from NASCAR class is achieved.
On Thursday evening, the drivers arrived on the track and did the track walk on the historic Brands Hatch. For Rautjärvi on completely new tracks, walking is really important. Ian Eric Waden, the winner of the previous year's Legends Trophy, who is also Rautjärvi's teammate in the Pro class with number 72, was giving good tips. In Nascar we are driving the IndyCircuit track layout. It is about 2 km long. The tracks are the same until the fourth bend, but when the GP track turns left in the bend, the Indy track turns right, already folding to the main straight. The indy track is so amazing that viewers can see the entire track at once. The event was also sold out because NASCAR has given a lot of entertainment here for spectators also in previous years.
Friday morning was peaceful. During the day, clean and successful official practices were done. The pace of Rautjärvi was improving all the time. Rautjärvi continued towards Saturday qualifying with a good feeling. Qualifying were driven in two groups due to the large number of cars. Overall result was 27/33. The driver himself had higher expectations this time.
For the first race of the weekend, Rautjärvi planned to gain as many positions as possible. “Before the race, Grid Walk had a staggering number of fans and crowds looking for a signature and cheering. “Yes, the energies were on the roof and it was a great feeling to start competing ”, Jonne commented. The race went smoothly. The Brands Hatch race is known for being full of action and contact on the track. Rautjärvi kept the car in his glove and gained a stunning ten place in the race to finish in p.17. As a cherry on the cake, Rautjärvi got a second place in his class, Junior Trophy, and got his first podium place in Nascar!
On Sunday, the action and crashes in front caused challenges for Rautjärvi in the second start of the race weekend. The race started from 24th place with confidence. Based on yesterday's race, the expectations were high and the goals were in the top 15. However, as the race progressed, numerous safety cars and crashes hit a bad seam and at times Rautjärvi even drifted into the sand while dodging the spinning cars in front of him. The small chase got an even more annoying ending when the race ended a few laps before the checkered flag because of technical failure. Important points were luckily gained for Rautjärvi in Sunday's race. The cars that were higher in the series points were also crashing at an earlier stage of the race. Rautjärvi was naturally ahead of them in the final results of the race with more laps finished during the race.
Overall, the weekend was positive as driving improved and the development curve continued in exactly the right direction. There was a clear improvement in each session and most importantly the seasonal standings were also improved. Rank 15/37 overall in Nascar Pro division and 2nd place in Junior Trophy! Next, the team heads towards Vallelunga, Italy, which is again a completely different track than Brands Hatch.
Big thanks for Team Bleekemolen and sponsors!
Standings EuroNASCAR Pro:
Text: Timi Valamäki
Translate: Timi Valamäki
Most, Czech Republic
Race weekend on the Autodrom Most Czech Republic was a success. Steps forward were taken in many places and Rautjärvi got its best results of the season so far.
After the bad race weekend in Italy, the eyes were turned into the Czech and preparations began. During the longer summer break, the team had a lot of time for the cars and the whole team was really prepared. The official practices were run on Friday and the pace actually improved each session. The track quickly became familiar because Rautjärvi already had a good number of kilometers on the simulator.
Team had high hopes for saturday qualifying. With a good run, Rautjärvi achieved his best qualifying result of the season, 19th place. In terms of the start, the starting position was good because Rautjärvi was able to start from the inside of the track. The start of Saturday's race already looked promising, when after the first corner Rautjärvi was already in the top ten. Unfortunately, Rautjärvi's race almost stopped as a result of a crash in front of him in the second corner. "straight into the traffic jam and I got stuck between two cars like a hotdog" Rautjärvi himself commented on what happened. Thankfully, the race continued without damage. The big gap to the cars in front tightened quickly thanks to the safety car that started almost immediately, and the race got a new start for Rautjärvi. The finish line crossed in 13th place overall after a clean drive. The whole team celebrated the best result of the season with smiles on their faces. In the race, a podium was also achieved in Rautjärvi's own class “Junior Trophy”, and the silver trophy lifted in the air.
For Sunday, Rautjärvi raised his goals and aimed for the top 10 finish. The race, which contained clearly less safety cars and drama, ended with the checkered flag and 14th place. All in all, a great clean race even on Sunday and very important points. There was also a success in the Junior Trophy, when Sunday's race gave third place to Rautjärvi . The first class-specific double podium of the season was achieved.
Text: Timi Valamäki
Heusden zolder, Belgium