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Tough Break for Daniel

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Posted on August 31, 2023 Tags:

Averting Disaster at 200km/h

Monza synonymous with speed

While Oscar emerged shaken but unscathed from the near disaster, Daniel broke his wrist missing the Dutch Grand Prix. He flew to Barcelona for his surgery on Sunday.

Same Old Daniel

Misses Monza and Maybe Singapore

Earlier, Red Bull team principal Christian Horner pinpointed Singapore as a target but conceded “nature will take its course” being “one of the toughest circuits on the calendar”.

While Daniel was under the knife on Sunday Liam Lawson, Kiwi youngster and Red Bull reserve driver impressed in his grand prix debut at Zandvoort for AlphaTauri finishing 13th, two spots ahead of teammate Yuki Tsunoda.

The 23-year-old from Auckland will be behind the wheel of the AlphaTauri T04 in Italy. And quite possibly Singapore.

It’s a tough break for Daniel who returned to F1 as Nyck de Vries’ sudden replacement at Hungary. The dance through the Dutch dunes seemed a real chance to perform given he had the summer break to prepare.

Max in a World of His Own

The Red Bull megastar clinched his third straight win from pole at the tricky Zandvoort track, in front of his King, and a 300,000 strong jubilant Orange Army.

Veteran Aston Martin driver Fernando Alonso was a solid second with Alpine‘s Pierre Gasly third, after Sergio Perez copped a five-second penalty for speeding in pit lane.

It was Max’s 46th career win, bringing his total number of podium finishes to 90.

The Temple of Speed

Monza is synonymous with speed, as its nickname capably demonstrates. Inaugurated in 1922, it is one of the oldest tracks in the world still to be used, second only to Indianapolis. 

Italy’s Grand Prix has always been held in Monza – with only one exception, when Imola hosted the race in 1980.

Remarkably Monza still holds the record for the fastest race in the history of Formula 1, when Michael Schumacher set an unbeaten average race speed of 247.585 kph back in 2003.

As a result, teams use the lowest possible aerodynamic downforce levels to favour top speed by reducing drag.

Monza – Pirelli’s Home Event

MARIO ISOLA – Pirelli Head of Motorsport

Monza, Lombardy, Italy

Last year, there were no fewer than eight different strategies deployed by the top 10 finishers. Max Verstappen and George Russell (first and third respectively) opted for a single stop, while Charles Leclerc – who finished second – had already made two stops before a safety car towards the end of the race allowed all three drivers to stop again.       

The team with the most victories at Monza is Ferrari (19 out of 72 total grands prix) while the drivers with the most wins are Michael Schumacher and Lewis Hamilton, on five each.

Over the last five years Monza has produced different winners. Lewis Hamilton won in 2018, Charles Leclerc in 2019, Pierre Gasly in 2020, Daniel Ricciardo in 2021, and Max Verstappen in 2022.

Calan’s Stunning Performance

He and German co-driver Niklas Krütten currently lead both the Cup and the overall Gold Class Championship following a stunning performance in the first eight races in the uber-competitive GT World Challenge.

It’s been an incredible switch by Calan to GT racing at the highest level of the category.

So far this year Calan, 23, and his WRT team co-drivers have been on the Gold class podium an amazing six times, including two victories in Sprint events with Niklas and an outstanding P2 in the 24 hours of Spa with Niklas, 21, and Frenchman Jean-Baptiste Simmineaur, 22.

Mid-season Update

Crowdstrike 24 hours of Spa – Endurance Cup

In the biggest event of the season and the world’s largest GT race Calan, Niklas and JB executed an outstanding P2 result in the enormous 72 car field.

During the epic 24-hour race, Calan delivered outstanding stints including his first night session (in heavy rain) and a race-defining second time behind the wheel in which he handed the car over in P1 Gold, and P5 overall at the time.

A safety car intervention at the wrong time cost them the Gold class lead, however a solid performance throughout secured yet another podium in the historic event.

Monza – Endurance Cup 3 hours

On debut in the both the category and the GT World Challenge Calan, Niklas and JB brought the car home P3 in Gold class. Calan delivered an outstanding qualifying performance of P1 in Gold and P7 overall (of 55 cars).

Brands Hatch – Sprint Cup

In the first of the Sprint Cup events – two one-hour races with a compulsory driver change – Calan and Niklas finished P4 in class for Race 1.

In Race 2, the pair delivered a stunning victory to take their first P1 finish for the season.

Paul Ricard – Endurance Cup 6 hours

After a strong start by Calan moving the WRT #30 BMW M4 GT3 up to P2 and once again into podium contention, the car suffered an unlucky mechanical failure early in JB’s stint.

Misano – Sprint Cup

An outstanding weekend for Calan and Niklas with a P2 finish in Race 1 on the Saturday.

On Sunday they went one better, taking victory in Race 2 in a sensational result for the team.

Nurburgring – Endurance Cup 3 hours

This was a challenging weekend for BMW with the car not suiting the circuit. To make things more difficult, the weather was very wet throughout all of the practice and qualifying sessions, before dry weather in the race.

Despite this, Calan performed strongly once again, and along with co-drivers Niklas and JB, brought the car home once again on the podium in P3.

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