Arriving in Spa-Francorchamps for rounds six and seven of the 2014 Formula Renault 3.5 Series, the DAMS team had already won three of the five races, with Carlos Sainz Jr winning at Monza and Motorland Aragon, while Norman Nato won the sole race around the streets of Monte Carlo.
Leaving Spa, the team had won two more races with Sainz, both from pole position, while Nato took a couple of fifth places after disappointing qualifying positions left him having to fight back through the field.
Managing Director François Sicard looked back on an amazing week that began in Monaco and ended with Sainz’s domination of Spa. He feels the team are on an upward spiral, with both drivers putting in strong drives to help them lead the teams’ championship.
“What an incredible week,” exclaimed Sicard. “I would like to congratulate the whole team on their work as they didn’t relax for a second after Monaco. Carlos loves Spa and he gave a master class this weekend. Our rivals weren’t too far behind, but he has that little extra that enabled him to open up a gap.
“Although Norman started too far back on the grid his talent and his speed in the races helped him to score a good haul of points. At the moment things are looking good in the championship. However, there’s still a long way to go and we have to remain focused.”
Championship leader Sainz was delighted to win both races in Belgium, both from pole position. He had to fight more in the second race but once main challenger Oliver Rowland was delayed by a slow pit stop from his Fortec Motorsport pit crew, it was plain sailing for the Spaniard to win again.
“Naturally I’m very happy with two more victories,” said Sainz. “They make up for my slight disappointment in Monaco and winning at Spa is always a privilege. My thanks to the team as yet again the car was sensational. My rivals took points off one another so I have some wiggle room in the championship. But there’s no question of starting to calculate as my aim is victory in the races to come.”
Team-mate Nato was disappointed with his qualifying efforts that left him down in twelfth for race one and tenth for race two, but felt his race performances were somewhat better. He took two fifth place finishes that moves him up to fifth in the championship, and also moves DAMS well clear of Fortec in the Teams’ championship.
”I’m coming away from Spa with ambivalent feelings,” said Nato. “I was unable to get the best out of my car in the second part of qualifying. On the other hand I really enjoyed myself in the races and clinching two top-five finishes is a source of satisfaction. So I going to redouble my efforts to solve improve my qualifying and get back on the podium as soon as possible.”