29th & 30th June

Race Report

Track: Autodrom Most, Most, Czechoslovakia

This was the first time that the Euro NASCAR series visited the Autodrom Most in The Czech Republic and it didn’t disappoint. A fast track with lots of interest for the drivers was supported by excellent facilities and superb weather. All in all, it had the ingredients for a great weekend.

One of the early highlights was a trip into Most town centre to meet the locals. This was done in the cars and it brought out several thousand race fans who were keen to get photos and signatures. Ben drove the car back to the track and this, incredibly, goes down as his first ever experience of driving a car on public roads. Certainly something he will never forget.

Ben’s start to practice on Friday morning was delayed because during the very first session of Elite 1 drivers, and after only 5 minutes, the clutch stopped working and had to be changed. This is a very big job but the team managed to get it sorted before the afternoon practice. Ben found good pace during this practice and in all sessions of the weekend, although the car’s brakes were temperamental and this definitely caused some issues.

Qualification was a little disappointing with Ben finishing only a couple of tenths off Superpole, however he was still feeling happy about the car. This then led into the first race which went very well, starting P16 and finishing P12 with a very good lap towards the end which meant he would be starting P10 on the Sunday race. There was a lot of action during the race and a long safety car period, but Ben kept things clean and brought the car home nicely. However, it is worth noting that the temperature in Most did not help the drivers because Ben recorded a heat of 64 degrees in his car during the race. The sole of his right foot was also blistered because of the heat. The team brought along a paddling pool for the drivers to have a dip in after the races and this was most definitely needed.

On Sunday, starting P10, there was a lot of action on track and Ben was involved in a superb battle between 4 cars for P7 up to P11. At one stage Ben managed to get into p7 and his pace was looking great. However, a few braking gremlins started appearing and this led to a slight drop off in pace at times. The lack of consistency made it very hard to maintain a position and, after a few issues on track, Ben eventually fell back to P15. Still a great race and a great finish to the weekend.

Ben’s first experience of driving in The Czech Republic was incredibly positive because, once again, he has shown that he can race at this level and race well. He enjoyed some excellent battles with some incredibly experienced drivers who definitely race hard and make absolutely no allowances whatsoever for his age or experience. And, most importantly, Ben continues to learn and develop as a driver.