FIA Karting European Championship Round 4
19-21 July 2019
Lorenzo Patrese returned to FIA Karting European competition this weekend for the fourth round of the championship at the Le Mans circuit in France. With the decision made to graduate to the OK category this was a fresh start for Lorenzo, and valuable experience ready for next year.
Friday practice began well with Lorenzo consistently setting competitive times but when it was time for qualifying at the end of the day conditions were changing and, being in the last group, times were slower meaning that while he set the 6th fastest time in his group, overall his time put him in the mid-pack.
Saturday began strongly with 3rd in the warm-up session, but Lorenzo ended the first qualifying heat in a disappointing 15th position. In the next heat he suffered a post-race time penalty at the chequered flag for the front fairing of his kart being in an incorrect position which meant 18th place in the final results. The third heat saw Lorenzo make a good start from the 6th row of the grid and he was running 6th in the early stages of the 11 lap race, but a tyre pressure issue saw him slip down the order by the chequered flag.
The day had seen difficult conditions for racing with a wet, but drying, track making things challenging for everyone. In the final qualifying heat of the day things finally came together for Lorenzo. From 12th on the grid he made immediate progress to 6th at the end of lap one, 5th on lap two, then 4th on lap four, a position he held until the chequered flag.
Third position in the morning warm up again promised well, and Lorenzo followed that with 8th in his qualifying heat. Unfortunately he missed out on a place in the final by just two points.
During the weekend Lorenzo showed a good attitude and speed in the hard battles that are normal in this category. For what he did, and with a little bit more luck, the final could have been a good reward.
Now a little break and then he will go to Finland for the CIK FIA OK World Championship.