Colton Herta had a breakthrough EuroFormula Open weekend at the Red Bull Ring, becoming the first driver in 2016 to win both races of the weekend, the first of which gave himself and his Carlin team their maiden triumph in the series.
The American teenager assumed pole position for race one when Ferdinand Habsburg and Tatiana Calderon ahead of him in qualifying took grid penalties, and kept the lead into the first corner before being able to fend off Leonardo Pulcini and then pull away from Habsburg when Pulcini made a mistake.
“I had a great start – probably one of the best of those around me which meant I could lead in to the first corner and begin to pull a margin,” said Herta on carlin.co.uk.
“I came under a little bit of pressure from Leonardo but other than that the race was under control knowing that we had pace and even managing to save my tyres a little.
“The car was really great today and I felt comfortable. It’s fantastic to get the first win, I’m really happy with that.”
Herta secured his second pole position of the season on Sunday morning, and converted that into his second win of the weekend, becoming the first driver this season to win both races, and the American knew that should the start go well that he had the pace to dominate once more.
“The first driver to win both races over the course of the weekend feels pretty good; it’s really cool to get that this weekend,” admitted Herta.
“Today the start was our only worry, we knew we had to lead going in to the first corner after that we knew we had the pace and that our tyre management was good. From there it was just a case of pulling the gap.”
Herta still believes he is in the battle for the championship with three rounds and six races remaining, although he is 92 points behind Pulcini, and he is looking to continue the momentum from Austria into the remainder of the season.
“I’m really pleased that we made the most of the weekend, I’m proud of the team and it’s great to stand here with a double win,” said Herta. “Our approach now for the rest of the season doesn’t change – we continue what we’re doing.”