Das shows serious speed with weekend fastest lap

Das shows serious speed with weekend fastest lap

Cameron Das has proven his race speed as second to none following a strong display at Snetterton which saw him take the Sunoco Fastest Lap Award this weekend in the BRDC British Formula Three Championship event at Snetterton. The young American racer had a weekend full of ups and downs over the course of qualifying and the three races on offer – all the while ensuring he picked up valuable points for the Championship standings adding to his tally and heading in to the final round next time out in an overall fourth position.

With two days of testing under his belt on Thursday and Friday, Das went in to the penultimate qualifying session of the 2017 season feeling confident of the pace in his Carlin run Tatuus-Cosworth car. Driving well and battling with his two team mates over the top spot in the close-fought session he eventually set the fifth fastest lap to secure his start for the opening race of the weekend.

The first race on Saturday was held in warm conditions around the Norfolk circuit and was a relatively processional affair for those involved. Das, who was running in sixth by the end of the first lap, maintained this position and crossed the line to get more great points in the bag.

The second race of the weekend however was full of far more drama than the first; lining up in third due to the reverse grid nature of the race, Das came to blows with team mate James Pull on the opening lap which in turn meant pitting to repair damage to his car. Das put this behind him well though and focused on getting a fast lap on the board to secure a strong starting position for the third and final race of the weekend. Das did this in style; setting the fastest lap of the race, which would also turn out to be the fastest of the weekend, to ensure provisional pole for race three.

However heartbreak struck and Das had his pole position taken away from him following the clash between himself and Pull. This meant that the 2016 F4 US Champion had to start a painful five places back on the grid from where he had rightly qualified; with overtaking extremely difficult at Snetterton this brought his chances of a podium to an abrupt end and placed him eighth when taking the flag.

However the talented American can take solace in the fact that he not only scored great points to hold fourth overall in the Championship standings but also walked away from the weekend with the Sunoco Award for setting the quickest lap; once again cementing his position as a driver to be watched in the Championship due to his impressive speed.

Das reflected, “I definitely had good pace all throughout the weekend but the top five or so were often separated by a tenth or sometimes less, so it was certainly difficult in qualifying. There was a threat of rain, so I pushed hard in the beginning of the session to put an early lap in but that hurt my rear tires for the end of the session when the grip was much better.

“My pace was good throughout the races, especially in the second when I had the fastest lap of the weekend. I had good potential through the whole weekend, but a few difficult opening laps and a penalty made moving forward very difficult. In retrospect, I still got some good points in the bag, and we’re going into the final weekend at Donington with second place in the championship still in our sights.

“I want to give a big thanks to Carlin for a car that was rapid all weekend and to my sponsors Expedia, Red Lion Hotels, and Autobahn Indoor Speedway for giving me their confidence. Also, a big congrats to Enaam Ahmed for clinching the championship – it was well deserved.”

The final round of the 2017 BRDC British Formula Three Championship will get underway at Donington Park at the end of September.


Das on course for strong penultimate race weekend

Das on course for strong penultimate race weekend

This weekend marks the penultimate round of the 2017 BRDC British Formula Three Championship for Cameron Das who will be looking to make the most of the three races on offer around the Snetterton circuit. Das has already competed at the Norfolk track once this season, taking a brilliant podium position, so heads in to the weekend knowing the circuit well and after six rounds sits in a strong fourth position overall in his Carlin-run Tatuus-Cosworth BRDC British F3 car.

In what is turning out to be a competitive 2017 season, rookie racer Das has already enjoyed success including victory in the series. In the championship order, the fight rages on with the American sitting fourth overall; proving just how close and competitive the racing action is, the difference between third and sixth is just 46 points with a huge tally still on offer over the next two rounds. This closeness means it’s all to play for as he looks to take the advantage over his competitors and close the gap to those ahead.

In a year full of excitement, rising racing star Das has already clinched one fantastic victory at Rockingham and a total of six strong podiums in just his first season in the Championship which has also marked his first year racing full time in Europe. As the reigning F4 US Champion, 17 year old Das has been using all of his racing experience to get to grips with a multitude of new and exciting challenges over the course of the year racing at some of the UK’s premier circuits.

This weekend the challenge returns to the three mile circuit of Snetterton; a notoriously difficult track to overtake on. With 13 turns it features a wide variety of challenges to enjoy – including a tricky hairpin, high speed corners and fast, technical sectors. As such, qualifying on Saturday morning will be ever important for Das as he aims to start the weekend off in the best possible way looking to add to his already brilliant tally of three pole positions.

Das said of his experience racing at the circuit previously, “Having been at Snetterton earlier in the year, we have a lot of data and important personal experience to make the race weekend go smoothly. The two days of testing before the weekend will be about fine tuning the car mostly because we’ve already developed a good baseline setup. Snetterton is a tough track to pass on so the primary focus for us has to be on qualifying well and going from there.”

Looking ahead to the weekend he added, “The goal is to win. The last weekend [Brands Hatch] was hindered a bit by weather conditions that I wasn’t yet accustomed to, but I now have loads more experience under my belt to put together a lights to flag victory at Snetterton. It’s important to be consistent, but also consistently at the top. The points are so close in the Championship fight so it is imperative to rack up as many as possible so that nothing desperate is required at Donignton in September for the final round.”

This weekend at Snetterton will feature two full days of testing on Thursday and Friday for Das to get back up to speed and work with his engineer ahead of qualifying on Saturday and three fast and furious races to look forward to over the course of the weekend.

As ever, the action can be followed live via the BRDC British Formula Three Championship Twitter feed: @BRDCBritishF3

Or by watching live timing: http://www.tsl-timing.com/event/173451


Das recovers well to return to the podium

Das recovers well to return to the podium

Despite a challenging start to his weekend Cameron Das has once again shown grit and determination to secure another podium finish in the BRDC British Formula Thee Championship. The sixth round of the competitive 2017 season at Brands Hatch was a mixed weekend for the rising American single seater racing star which started with an engine failure resulting in vital track time lost in his only free practice session around the full length Grand Prix circuit. Further incidents on track left him out of position for two of the three races however he bounced back strong in the final race of the weekend to finish second overall – and claim a rightful spot back on the podium.

The sixth round of the British F3 Championship began with two days of official testing around the shorter Brands Hatch Indy circuit, at the very least giving the 17 year old a chance to get to know a handful of the corners on the circuit before the cars were released to the full length Grand Prix configuration on Saturday morning for Free Practice. However misfortune struck Das when his Tatuus-Cosworth Carlin car suffered an engine failure after just three laps. Not exactly a quick fix, this set back meant that the reigning F4 US Champion had to sit on the side lines and watch his vital track time slip away from him – putting him on the back foot to his competitors for qualifying later in the day.

Not one to let the issue get to him, Das refocused and jumped back in to his car later on to set the seventh quickest time; securing his race one starting position. Das said of his challenging start to the weekend, “The engine failure was really unfortunate and it wouldn’t have been such a big deal if I had experience on the Grand Prix circuit. It meant that I had to try and get up to speed really quickly in qualifying later in the day, which I believe I did as well as I could considering the circumstances.”

The first race of the weekend was marred by bad weather which struck at the mid-way point; despite being in a position where he would have clinched a reverse grid pole, the dark clouds overhead let loose with a torrential downpour which caught many drivers out. Sadly Das was one of those to hit the barriers before the race was red flagged. This is turn left him at the back of the field for the second race of the weekend during which bad luck hit again. Tapped by another driver from behind, having made great progress in the initial stages, Das’ right rear tire was punctured which forced him to pit for new rubber and left him well and truly down the order with the only option being to set a fast lap in order to qualify well for race three.

Das reflected on the races, “The first race was a bit frustrating to say the least. In race one, I was in position to have the reverse grid pole for race two, but I understeered off the track in turn one as rain started coming down seemingly out of nowhere. It was a mistake on my part, but I’ve learned tremendously for it.

“In Race two, I moved up from 15th to ninth and I was battling for eighth when another driver punctured my right rear tire. I rushed back to the pits as fast as I could on three wheels in order to get a new tire. It was a bit annoying but the real goal after that was to set a qualifying lap for race three, and I was able to do that well.”

For race three Das was back where he belonged. Having qualified in second he didn’t look back as the lights went out and raced well to return to a brilliant podium position in second – also ensuring that he moves up to fourth place in the Championship standings with two rounds to go.

“This has definitely been the most challenging weekend yet but I think the final result and getting on the podium showed how hard we worked as a team despite the hardships we faced.”

Speaking of the championship he said, “I moved up a position in the standings despite the issues we had early in the weekend so that’s certainly a promising sign for the final segment of the season.”

The penultimate race weekend of the 2017 BRDC British Formula Three season will take place at Snetterton at the end of August.


Brands Hatch beckons Das for BRDC British F3

Brands Hatch beckons Das for BRDC British F3

After three race free weekends it’s time for Cameron Das to once again grace the cockpit of his BRDC British Formula Three car as the sixth round of the 2017 season roars back in to life at Brands Hatch, UK. Das, who currently sits fifth overall in only his rookie season, will be looking forward to getting back up to speed at the Kent circuit which will play host to three action-packed races this weekend. Race winner Das hopes to use the double header Thursday and Friday test session well to his advantage with the aim being to firmly put himself back on the podium over the course of the weekend.

From the longest circuit on the calendar last time out at Spa-Francorchamps, American racer Das now faces the shortest on the calendar in the form of the Brands Hatch GP track which plays host to the sixth round of the season. The 2017 Championship  has so far been a thrilling showdown with the rising single seater star proving his speed from the offset; so far taking a victory in the competitive Championship, a further four podiums and three impressive pole positions which also has him in contention for the Jack Cavill Pole Position Cup within the series itself.

For this weekend, Das will be on track from Thursday for two days of official testing before the weekend gets underway in earnest on Saturday. Having never taken to the Brands Hatch Grand Prix circuit before the aim is for Das to use the two days of testing on the shorter Indy configuration to his advantage. He commented, “I haven’t had any experience on the Grand Prix layout in the race car so the extent of my knowledge is basically from years playing racing games and on the simulator. So it will be a tough track to get up to speed at during the 20 minute practice session on Saturday morning, but I’ve spent a huge amount of time on the simulator to compensate for that.”

The reigning Formula Four US Champion, who sits just one point shy of breaking the 300 point barrier in the Championship, commented of the Brands Hatch race circuit, “It’s a high speed track with little room for error, so it’s all about precision and bravery – two things I plan on having plenty of this weekend. These two days at Brands Indy are really to reacclimatize myself with the car again after having such a long break. Brands Indy shares the first three corners with the GP layout, so that is helpful but there isn’t anything in particular we are hunting for during these tests just to get a feel for the track ahead of the weekend.”

Das has been a challenger throughout the season – consistently securing points for his Championship campaign which has him currently lying in fifth position overall. Reflecting on his hopes and aspirations for the weekend and the final few rounds of the season he added, “The approach has always been to win and that won’t change these last few rounds. Mathematically the Championship is still possible, but it will take a lot of effort and a bit of luck; a top three or top two Championship position is more than feasible by the end of this weekend. It’s been a couple rounds since I’ve been in the podium, so that’s a first priority but I want to be on that top step again for sure.

“We’ve had a break in the calendar which has allowed me to do a lot of training on the simulator and in the gym. While breaks can be nice, I’m really eager to get back in the car. Brands Hatch is another one of those legendary circuits and I believe it will suit my driving style.”

To keep up to date with the BRDC British Formula Three race winner this weekend live timing is available on the TSL website; http://www.tsl-timing.com/ where both the Thursday and Friday test sessions are available as well as qualifying and the races over the course of Saturday and Sunday.

You can also keep track of the Championship on Twitter for live information from the event by following the twitter handle @BRDCBritishF3.