The third round of the FIA Formula 2 championship brought frustration for Louis Delétraz this weekend as an early electrical issue restricted his progress in the races at the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya.
The Swiss driver was determined to convert his proven F2 pace into a pair of strong results in Spain, but his hopes were dealt an early blow during Friday’s Free Practice session when an electrical problem halted his ADSS-supported car.
“One of the electronic boxes that is vital for the car broke and it couldn’t be fixed,” Louis explained. “That meant I only did one lap during practice and I went into qualifying without being able to do any set-up-work or race sims. Losing one of our four sessions handicapped the whole weekend.”
Unable to take full advantage of the all-important track time available to him, Louis couldn’t place his Carlin machine higher than P14 on the grid for Saturday’s Feature Race.
The 22-year-old battled hard during the 37-lap encounter under bright Spanish skies but, with a lack of pace at his disposal, the best he could manage was P12 at the chequered flag.
Starting in the middle of the pack and racing on a track that isn’t particularly noted for its overtaking opportunities, Louis’ progress was also limited during Sunday’s Sprint Race as he completed the race distance in P11.
“The team worked hard to improve the set-up of my car overnight and the pace was better on Sunday with no tyre degradation. I managed to set the fifth fastest time of the race but it was hard to break into the points starting from where we did,” he said.
Louis now has 10 days to prepare for the next round of the F2 championship on the iconic streets of Monte Carlo (23-25 May). It’s a venue Louis knows well and the perfect environment in which he hopes he can bounce back from his Spanish disappointment.
He said: “Our technical issue in Spain was out of our control and a lesson learned. Now it’s maximum focus on Monaco where I finished P2 last season. I had very strong pace there in 2018, so the aim is to at least match that – or go one better this year!”