Double R Racing’s Tatiana Calderon was bitterly disappointed to miss the final FIA Formula 3 European Championship race at the Norisring due to illness (13-14 July).
After a six-week summer break, the F3 European season recommenced at Germany’s Norisring – the sole street circuit on the calendar, which navigates its way through the historic city of Nuremberg.
Calderon was brimming with enthusiasm after free practice, exploiting her seat time to acclimatise to the perils of street circuit racing.
The 20-year old lady racer revelled in her new challenge and was soon au fait with the circuit configuration, maximising every inch of the track and gradually extracting more and more pace from her Double R Racing-prepared F3 racer on an ever-quickening track surface.
Calderon cut her deficit to the frontrunners by half a second in second practice.
However, she was unable to carry that pace through to qualifying, where the primary objective is to get an adequate tow along the 2.3km circuit’s lengthy straights.
The Colombian was disappointed to qualify 26th for Round 16 and then lose yet more ground away from the start as a result of an unforced error under braking for Turn 1.
Determined to make amends, Calderon began an admirable charge back through the field until a collision with Michaela Cerruti on lap 14 spelled the end of her race.
Her pace was solid in the second European F3 encounter. She was hot on the heels of Double R team-mate Antonio Giovinazzi, Richard Goddard and Sandro Zellar, keeping former Toyota Racing Series foe Jann Mardenborough at bay to finish 26th.
“I’m really disappointed because I made a big improvement in race two and we still had some changes we wanted to try for the last race,” said Calderon. “I had stomach problems and didn’t feel well during the second race on Saturday.
“I went to the doctor for an injection, as I was pretty dehydrated, but I didn’t have enough strength or energy to compete. While it was tough to opt out of the race, I think I made the right decision by not putting myself and my competitors in danger. Now I’m just looking forward to my next outing in the British F3 Championship at one of my favourite circuits, Spa.”
Calderon and her Double R Racing team will contest the second round of the British Formula 3 Championship at Belgium’s legendary Spa-Francorchamps circuit in two weeks’ time (25-27 July).