Gelael Set For Return To Zandvoort

Zandvoort, 26th September - Following hard on the heels of his racing in last weekend’s British Formula 3 International Series at Nurburgring, Indonesian Sean Gelael returns for his second visit to Zandvoort and more action in the Formula 3 European Championship.

The Dutch circuit, which hosted a World Championship Formula 1 Grand Prix up until 1985, begins a hectic run of the three final rounds of the European championship in four weeks, and gives Gelael a chance to really get comfortable in his Double R Racing Dallara-Mercedes.

For 16-year-old Sean, not only the youngest driver in the 30-car field but also the least inexperienced, this has been a year of hard learning. But in the last European round at the Nurburgring he came closer than ever to the top-10 points-scoring positions, with a fine 13th position.

He has already raced at Zandvoort, in the non-championship Masters of F3, which took place in July. Unfortunately he crashed out of the race so he will be hoping not to repeat that result!

The Zandvoort circuit is very tough, typical of the old-fashioned European tracks that took shape in the 1940s and ’50s. It has a host of very fast corners that demand maximum concentration and total faith in the aerodynamics and grip of the high-tech Formula 3 cars.

Also, almost uniquely for a circuit of this level, some of the corners at the venue – which is just across the road from the North Sea beach – are banked, which means some interesting variations on racing lines that really rewards the experience of many of Gelael’s rivals.

With the corners being so long and fast, this makes overtaking very difficult as following closely behind another racer upsets the aerodynamic grip at the front of your own car. This means that qualifying is all-important.

“It has been good to get back into racing at the Nurburgring after a break of a few weeks,” said Sean. “Every racer wants to race so I am really looking forward to these end-of-season rounds following one after another.

“Zandvoort will be tough. The European field is super-competitive and, although I have been learning all the time, the other drivers have all been getting better too, so that means I have to improve at an even faster rate!

“Still, I hope to do a good job and get the maximum out of my car and myself in qualifying, and then if I do that I can hopefully begin to start challenging for some points. This is a great chance to put in some good performances at the end of the season and boost my confidence before preparations for 2014.”

Free practice and qualifying at Zandvoort take place this Friday, 27th September, with races one and two on Saturday and race three on Sunday. (sm/arl) 

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Fia WEC
11/09/2022
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