GP3 Series - News

DAMS score best GP3 result of season at Monza
DAMS score best GP3 result of season at Monza
DAMS score best GP3 result of season at Monza

05/09/2017 - DAMS score best GP3 result of season at Monza

Tatiana Calderon scythed through to seventh place from the back of the grid to secure DAMS’ best GP3 Series result of the year at Monza, Italy (1-3 September).

The result was also a career-best for Sauber F1 Development Driver Calderon and came after a superb drive.

Brazilian Bruno Baptista also collected points with a strong 10th position, as Red Bull Junior Driver Dan Ticktum was hit out of contention whilst fighting for a top- five finish on his debut.

Free Practice

Focusing on race set-up, Calderon was 19th fastest in practice. However, heavy rain forced Saturday’s qualifying to be cancelled with the times set in Friday’s session determining the Feature Race grid.

Like Calderon, Baptista did not focus on single-lap pace in free practice and was 16th overall, which is where he lined up on the grid.

Taking part in his maiden GP3 Series weekend, Ticktum was quickly up to speed at Monza; the Briton 10th in practice.

Tatiana Calderon:We were testing the car with different set-ups on Friday, so the fact that qualifying was cancelled was not ideal and the grid position wasn’t a true representation of our pace.

Bruno Baptista:Practice was OK. I wasn’t pushing as hard as possible so we could have been further up than we were.

Dan Ticktum:On Friday, I felt the pace was good and I’m very happy with the performance. It’s a shame we couldn’t get any running in qualifying as it’s likely that we would have improved even more.

Feature Race

With the Sprint event cancelled, the Feature Race was moved to Sunday. Calderon started well, but had contact and pitted for repairs under the safety car. She then made great progress climbing to seventh. Frustratingly, the cancellation of the Sprint Race denied her a front-row start on the partially-reversed grid.

Baptista managed his tyres well early in the race, before making a late charge to take his second points finish of the year in 10th.

Ticktum started strongly to move up to seventh inside a lap. Whilst battling for fourth at the halfway stage, he was hit from behind and received a left-rear puncture. He dropped out of the points-paying positions and finished 13th.

Tatiana Calderon:I was conservative at the start to save tyres and it paid off in the end. The result is great and I want to thank the team for their help this weekend, hopefully we will continue to score more points from now on.

Bruno Baptista:We had some really good fights throughout the race and the car was set-up nicely. It’s great to finish in the points again, but we still have areas to improve for the next one.

Dan Ticktum:The start went well and I did everything I could to keep my nose clean. The contact is frustrating, but that happens a lot in racing. Overall, I’m still pleased that I was fighting for fourth on my debut and everyone at DAMS was very helpful.

François Sicard, Managing Director:It was great to see Ticktum immediately on the pace having never driven this car before. He was very unlucky in the race, but after his pitstop he was lapping at the same pace as the leaders. He will be back with us to fight at Jerez and Abu Dhabi. We are very satisfied to see Calderon collect some points after a great comeback! She’s been showing very strong performances since Hungary and deserves this. We’re also delighted that Baptista scored his second point of the season and now the focus is on even better at the final two rounds.

 

Round seven of the 2017 GP3 Series takes place at Jerez, Spain (6-8 October).

» See more

» Close

DAMS unrewarded after strong GP3 qualifying at Spa
DAMS unrewarded after strong GP3 qualifying at Spa
DAMS unrewarded after strong GP3 qualifying at Spa

29/08/2017 - DAMS unrewarded after strong GP3 qualifying at Spa

DAMS drivers Tatiana Calderón, Bruno Baptista and Matthieu Vaxivière were unable to capitalise on their strong pace early in the weekend after enduring challenging races in round four of the GP3 Series at Spa-Francorchamps.

It was a positive start to the weekend as Sauber F1 Team Development Driver Calderón, Frenchman Vaxivière and Brazilian Baptista set competitive times in free practice.

Vaxiviere then secured DAMS’ best qualifying result of the season, as Calderón impressively made the top-10 for the second weekend running. However, race incidents meant that all three drivers were unable to score points.

Free Practice & Qualifying

Colombian Calderón showed fine form in practice, going second quickest after topping it earlier in the session, before qualifying in 10th – equalling the best of her GP3 career.

In only his second GP3 Series weekend, Vaxivière was fifth-fastest in both practice and the wet qualifying session.

Baptista returned from the summer break after scoring his first point in Hungary and went 12th in practice. However, he was unable to get a clean lap in during qualifying and ended the session 19th.

Tatiana Calderón:We started off really well in practice and even though I was hoping for a better result in the wet qualifying session, it was still very promising for the race.

Matthieu Vaxivière:Practice showed that we had good pace in the dry and when the rain came for qualifying we were unsure where we would be. It went well though and I was happy with my grid position for the Feature Race.

Bruno Baptista:In practice the car felt quite good and we continued to improve. I didn’t manage to get a good run in qualifying when the conditions were at their best, so had work to do for the races.

Feature & Sprint Races

After stalling on the grid, Calderón was recovering lost positions strongly when she made unfortunate contact with another car and was penalised 10 seconds, dropping her to 16th at the finish. She improved to 13th in the Sprint Race after showing promising pace.

Vaxivière was looking to challenge for a strong points finish in the Feature Race, but was hit by another competitor and forced his retirement. The Frenchman improved from 18th on the grid to 15th on Sunday.

It was a difficult Feature Race for Baptista, who retired after an incident. He improved from the back row in the Sprint event to finish 16th.

Tatiana Calderón:Unfortunately, I made a mistake on the start in the Feature Race and had some early contact. The pace was still good and in the Sprint event I was able to have some good battles. We are improving and I’m looking forward to Monza.

Matthieu Vaxivière:I couldn’t capitalise on the positive start to the weekend in the Feature Race and had contact with another driver. This sent us backwards for Sunday, as we tried to fine tune the set-up and went a bit too far.

Bruno Baptista:I was hit by another driver on Saturday and was forced to retire. The Sprint Race started well and I made a few overtakes on the first lap, but I knocked my pit limiter after contact and lost time.” 

François Sicard, Managing Director:It was a good start, but the incidents in the Feature Race jeopardised the rest of the weekend. Even if you cannot see it in the results, all three drivers did a great job and continued to learn and progress with the car. Vaxiviere's feedback was really useful. Calderon was excellent in qualifying and we hope that her hard work will be rewarded in the future. Baptista was unlucky this weekend, but he has been moving forwards at a fantastic rate since the beginning of the season, so we’re sure to be back stronger at Monza.

 

Round six of the 2017 GP3 Series will take place at Monza, Italy (1-3 September).

» See more

» Close

DAMS bounce back with GP3 points in Budapest
DAMS bounce back with GP3 points in Budapest
DAMS bounce back with GP3 points in Budapest

01/08/2017 - DAMS bounce back with GP3 points in Budapest

DAMS driver Bruno Baptista charged to his first GP3 Series points finish with a deserved 10thplace finish at the Hungaroring, Hungary (28-30 July).

The Brazilian driver showed strong pace throughout the weekend to give DAMS a second points finish of the year, with Sauber F1 Development Driver Tatiana Calderon forced to retire after her best qualifying performance in the series.

On his GP3 debut, Frenchman Matthieu Vaxiviere made steady improvements in each session to finish just outside the top 10 in both races.

Free Practice and Qualifying

It was a strong start in Hungary for Baptista who was 10th in Friday practice. The 20-year-old was unable to match that time in qualifying and he lined up 16th on the Feature Race grid.

Colombian driver Calderón also enjoyed a fantastic start to the weekend, flying to ninth place in practice before producing her best GP3 qualifying result in 10th.

22-year-old Vaxivière used the early sessions to gain a better understanding of the car, going 15th fastest in practice, before qualifying 19th after struggling to match his early pace.

Bruno Baptista:We started really well in free practice, but made a few set-up changes for qualifying and I lost a lot of that initial pace, meaning we had to start much further back than I would’ve liked.

Tatiana Calderón:I was quite happy with the pace in free practice and qualifying. I think there was potential for me to be higher up the grid, but we were confident ahead of the races.

Matthieu Vaxivière:Everything was new to me in practice, but I was steadily learning and was happy with the improvements. Qualifying didn’t quite go to plan and I got a penalty, which forced me to start race one from the pit lane.

Feature and Sprint Races

Baptista launched himself into 13th during the opening laps of race one, before improving to 10th after an early virtual safety car restart, which he held until the chequered flag. He retired from the Sprint Race when his car stopped.

After being forced to retire from the Feature Race, 24-year-old Calderón stormed through to 11th from the back of the grid on Sunday, but contact from behind led to a puncture and she finished 13th.

Starting his first GP3 race from the pitlane, Vaxivière showed good pace to finish just outside the points in 12th. The Formula V8 3.5 race-winner climbed to 11th in the Sprint Race, posting the second-fastest lap.

Bruno Baptista:Race one went really well, I made some great overtakes and got into a good position early on. The result was positive, especially as we had a DRS issue that limited our top speed and meant we didn’t have the opportunity to overtake like the others. I had another solid start in race two, but the engine stopped and I had to retire.

Tatiana Calderón:In race one I had an incident in Turn 3 and had nowhere to go, so spun out. The puncture in the Sprint Race is frustrating, as we were looking at a points finish, but hopefully we can come back stronger after the break.

Matthieu Vaxivière:I understood more about the car due to the experience gained in race one and improved a lot. On Sunday I was more confident and was one of the quickest out there. The weekend was positive and I’d like to thank DAMS for the opportunity.

François Sicard, Managing Director:We were much happier with the whole package this weekend. Tatiana showed great pace and this was her best performance. The result is a shame for her, but we will come back stronger after the break. Bruno followed in her steps and the result was good. He still has to learn certain aspects, but we will work on this for the rest of the season. Matthieu was fantastic, he only had a few laps to get used to the car and he improved throughout all the sessions. He gave us good feedback and it worked well.

 

Round five of the 2017 GP3 Series will take place at Spa-Francorchamps, Belgium (25-27 August).

» See more

» Close

Sparco