Round 6 of the Formula GP3 Series took place over the weekend Sept. 5-6 at the ‘Cathedral of Speed’ – the Monza race circuit located an hour away from the city of Milan in Italy. After a disappointing weekend at Spa during the Belgium Grand Prix two weeks earlier, Rayong based Thai racer Sandy Stuvik, driving for the Status GP team, was looking for an improvements in his results.
Stuvik claimed 14th place in the wet conditions of first qualifying on Saturday morning. Starting from the middle of the pack he knew he would have to make use of Monza’s long straights for overtaking to gain positions: “It was our first real wet session with this car this season so it was something new for me. I lost quite a lot of time in 2 corners which prevented a top-ten finish, but we know where to improve should it be wet again,” said the Thai driver.
Thai driver Sandy Stuvik waits in his car on the grid prior to the start of Race 1 at Monza, Saturday, Sept. 5.
In contrast to qualifying, Race 1 took place on a sunny Monza circuit. Stuvik finished his race only one position higher than he started from; there was a lot of change of positions towards the end of the race and unfortunately the Thai driver couldn’t progress how he wanted to. However, following a stewards’ inquiry Stuvik was promoted to 11th place after two drivers received penalties.
“We made some changes to the car and most of these changes helped us improve were we wanted, and in some areas too much. Now we know what to do for the next race tomorrow.” Stuvik commented.
Race 2 took place on Sunday morning and with some further tweaks to the set-up of his car, Stuvik was eager to gain some positions. After a decent start the Thai driver could start picking away at his opponents as the race went on, and he eventually finished in 8th position.
Stuvik (foreground) and his Status Grand Prix teammates line up in the pit lane during qualifying at the Monza racetrack in northern Italy.
“I’m decently satisfied with the race today, there were some hindrances during the race which prevented me from moving further up the grid, but those are things I will learn from and try to improve for our next round. I feel we’ve made improvements to the car that suit me and I’m looking forward to where this brings us,” he said post race.
The next weekend of racing will take place at the circuit of Sochi, on Russia’s Adriatic coast on the 9-11 October. The GP3 Series now waves goodbye to Europe, and the next few races feature circuits lesser-known to most drivers. This should create a challenge for all the drivers as they head into the final part of the season.