Review: Carlo van Dam unbeatable during Rizla Racing Days at Assen!13-08-07
Carlo van Dam was dominating this weekend at the TT-Circuit in Assen. The Dutchman, racing in front of his home crowd, took two pole positions, two victories and the fastest lap in the second race of the ATS Formula 3 Cup. Van Dam improved his leading position in the championship. After twelve races the S-T-A-R-T driver has collected a total of 107 points. In the Rookie Cup Van Dam also has a big lead after scoring 100 championship points.
After the win last week at the Lausitzring, Van Dam went to Assen with a lot of confidence. On Friday morning the free practice session took place. Van Dam went out on an old set of tyres to get familiar with the 4.555 meter long track. He then switched to a new set of tyres and went out again. The speed was there from the word go and Van Dam set the fastest lap of the session (1:33.6), a second quicker than the rest of the field. Next up were the two qualifying sessions. With just fifteen minutes remaining Van Dam went out as the last of all the competitors. Despite the fact that there was a lot of sand on the track Van Dam went really fast and secured the pole position for the first race of the weekend. Setting a 1:34.054 he beat Vervisch and Vietoris. In the second 30-minute qualifying Van Dam went out earlier for a fast lap. The Van Amersfoort Racing driver was really confident and was the only one to go quicker than 1:34. His lap time of 1:33.185 was eight tenths of a second quicker than the number 2 of the session Récardo Bruins Choi. This meant Van Dam took his ninth pole position of the season. Vietoris was again third fastest.
Van Dam started well on Saturday. He was able to create a gap in the early stages of the race when his biggest rivals, Vervisch and Vietoris, ran into each other. Van Dam tried to get away from the rest but JB Motorsport driver Vervisch was able to get closer. Four laps remained in the race when Van Dam tried to overtake a backmarker at the Geert Timmer corner. He slid onto the dirty part of the track however and Vervisch was able to take advantage of this mistake and closed in rapidly. Van Dam managed to maintain his leading position though and after sixteen laps he crossed the line to take his sixth win of the season. The second race was drive on Sunday afternoon. Under the eyes of 50.000 spectators Van Dam had an extremely well start again. He was able to keep Bruins Choi behind him despite a lot of pressure from his team mate. When Bruins Choi made a mistake Van Dam was able to increase his lead. In the final lap of the race it looked as if Bruins Choi was able to get back, but with half a second difference it was Van Dam who took his second win of the weekend. An excellent result for the championship by the Dutchman. His rivals Vervisch and Verdonck finished fourth and ninth.
Carlo van Dam: “It was really a top weekend! In front of a lot of spectators I took two victories and crushed the opposition. The car was superb and the team did a hell of a job to get this result. I want to thank Van Amersfoort racing for this result. This is really giving us a lot of confidence for the next Formula 3 races here at Assen during the Champ Car World Series weekend!”