Villagómez: Feature Race was ‘Difficult’ and ‘Annoying’

Villagómez: Feature Race was ‘Difficult’ and ‘Annoying’


Rafael Villagómez described his Round 8 Feature Race as ‘difficult’ and ‘annoying’ after being penalised for overtaking under Safety Car conditions.

The Mexican driver was fighting to make up places having started 17th on the grid, when the Safety Car was deployed for a collision between Paul Aron and Joshua Dürksen. However, he said this was due to a technical issue rather than driver error:

“Normally, you get a beep when you have a virtual safety car. I was going for an overtake, and obviously I’m not looking at my steering wheel or panel.”

Villagómez was subsequently given a 10 second time penalty, which compounded his difficulties having struggled in the early laps of the race. The VAR driver feels this wasn’t representative of his pace or the car’s pace.

“I think we could have fought for the points, because as a team I think we did a great step compared to how we started. We really struggled yesterday in the wet, and also in Free Practice.”

Team mate Enzo Fittipaldi demonstrated good race pace, moving from the penultimate row of the grid into the points, finishing in eighth position. Villagómez felt his car had similar pace to offer.

“We started with the hards basically, and mid [stint] pace was alright, keeping up with Paul. He was pulling [away] a little bit. I think if we do everything right, I think the pace is more or less there.”

The team will now shift their attention to improving their one lap pace, having not qualified inside the top 10 since Jeddah.

“I think the main priority now is to fix qualifying, because that has been, for myself and as a team, a little bit weak. We have seen with Enzo this weekend, if you don’t qualify well it is difficult to make up the ground.”

VAR remain ninth in the team’s standings ahead of AIX and Trident.

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