DNRT Race 2 - Zandvoort

Posted on 1st of May 2011 by Vincent
SPAA05.com guest driver Derwin Belt ended 3rd overall! No car #01 at the start of this race while car #57 was troubled by serious braking problems the entire day.

Despite the huge efforts by the team of Bas Koeten and the guys at Saker Racing, only car #57, fitted with a brand new gearbox was ready for today. As a backup though Bas Koeten arranged a back-up car (#46) for our other driver Derwin Belt. He is quite familiar with the Saker as he won several race in the Dutch Supercar Challenge in 2010 with one.

In the morning track conditions were near great. It was a bit cold and the track was completely clean. Derwin in car #46 already managed a 1.49 in his third lap! I however had massive troubles with braking at the Audi S, Tarzan and Hugenholtz corners with the right front wheel locking every single time. At one point I actually touched the barrier in the Hugenholtz corner.

During qualifying Derwin went great, setting the best time of the day with 1.49,3. I still was plagued by problems, the braking problems were still not resolved and a punctured tire meant that there was even less time to try and find the problem. With a time of 1.59 I had to start from the back of starting grid.

Even though the team of Bas Koeten could not find any problems with the brakes, I already noticed the same problem at the warm-up of the first race. Racing like this was impossible, but I kept on driving in the hopes of figuring out what the exact problem was. Sadly Derwin had to retire from first place because he also had a punctured tire. Monny Krant from team kingkong managed to win the first race.

For the second sprint race, we thought we found the problem as there was a small air bubble in the brake lines. This had some effect but on uneven grounds hard braking was just dangerous. Derwin had a great race, climbing up from last place and ending 4th! The Jadbalja car driven by Rudolf Meijer won the race just before Monny Krant.

Finally half an hour before the 70-minute final race the problem with car #57 was found, a broken shock-absorber at the rear left of the car that caused the nose of the car to lift under breaking, effectively locking up the front right tire. So a quick change (about 15 minutes!) to other springs and dampers, borrowed from the #01 car, and I was good to go.

Starting (again) from the back of the field I managed to gain some positions and managed to get up to 5th place. This was not as easy as it seems since I had to fend of Ron Randasche for about at least 10 rounds before I could finally get away. Derwin in the mean time stormed up to 2nd place but was unable to catch Monny Krant who had build up a considerable lead. In the end thought Derwin finished first because Monny got a time penalty for multiple overtakingings under a yellow flag situation.

At the end of the day I was disappointed that I couldn't 'race' in the first two sprints but I was glad that we solved the problem with the car as driving with the braking problem was very unnerving. I'm now looking very much forward to the next race on the Snetterton 200 circuit. This will be my first time driving in the UK. This time with both the SPAA05 cars at the start and Derwin Belt will be driving the #01 car.