CAAL Racing’s Max Lanza enjoyed a “perfect weekend” during the NASCAR GP Czech Republic after he scored two overall top-10 finishes and a double victory in the Challenger Trophy on the two races held at Autodrom Most.
“A perfect weekend” is the summary of Max Lanza’s performance at Autodrom Most after he returned to the top step of the Challenger Trophy sub-classifications and brought home two Top-10 overall finishes in the two EuroNASCAR PRO races held at the Czech Republic.
The weekend at Most started off tough for Lanza and the No. 88 CAAL Racing crew as they were struggling to find the right set-up. The team finished 15th in the combined Friday Practice time charts and their fortunes seemingly took a turn for the worse when Lanza was only able to put his car in 20th position during Qualifying.
Fortunately for Lanza, the Big One at the start of Race 1 opened an opportunity for him to bring home a good finishing result. Lanza was able to avoid the Big One to put himself in 10th place for the first restart, which soon became 7th when he was able to get past Aliyyah Koloc, Liam Hezemans and Challenger Trophy rival Fabrizio Armetta on the restart.
Lanza’s race pace was well in the mix of the top guys, as showcased by his ability to overtake Frédéric Gabillon and defend his position from a hard-charging Alon Day in the battle for 5th position. He eventually lost 5th to Day on the second restart, but Lanza maintained his 6th place position all the way to the checkered flag to give him the win in the Challenger Trophy sub-classifications and his first top-10 finish since Valencia.
“When the condition gets tough, the tougher it gets. I could describe my weekend like this at Most. After the Quali, the morale was very low but we were able to to transform our sadness into the right power for Race 1. And it worked!” comments Lanza on his performance in Race 1.
Lanza’s race pace was undeniably quick: His fastest lap time of 1:42.359 was the 7th fastest of the 29-car EuroNASCAR PRO grid at Most and it was only 0.8 seconds off from the fastest lap set by Day.
In fact, it was so quick that Lanza admitted that if things had gone his way in Qualifying, he could have the chance to fight for the overall podium positions.
“Fourteen positions gained in a very eventful race: overtakes, contacts, safety car and restarts. We crossed the finish line sixth and my team went mad! With a less unlucky Quali, we could have also aimed for the podium!” admits Lanza.
Lanza’s brilliant performance continued in the second race as he was able to capitalize on his strong starting position to earn himself a 9th place finish. Despite several off-track excursions, Lanza stayed in the top-10 throughout the entire race and his performance was rewarded with another win in the Challenger Trophy.
“Race 2 was more straightforward and we battled with the top protagonists. We raced hard while also thinking about the championship and we brought home another top-10 and the second win in the Challenger Trophy. A perfect weekend!” said Lanza after the race.
Disclaimer: Unless noted on the photo, all photos used in this article are courtesy of NASCAR Whelen Euro Series / Bart Dehaese / Klemen Sofric.