Sergio Sette Câmara surprised many by securing his maiden FIA Formula 2 Championship race victory in Sunday’s Sprint race at Spa-Francorchamps, just a day after his first points of the season.
The young Brazilian secured MP Motorsport’s first F2 victory, and only the second ever in this category following Marco Sorensen’s win at Sochi Autodrom in 2014 when the category was known as the GP2 Series.
Sette Câmara started third after losing pole position thanks to the disqualification of both Charles Leclerc and Oliver Rowland from the Feature race, but he was in the lead by the time they arrived at turn one, and from there on, he controlled the pace to take the win.
“It’s a great moment, a great feeling,” said Sette Câmara on fiaformula2.com. “We didn’t have the best of luck in the beginning of the season, things just weren’t going our way no matter what, but the team kept supporting me and things finally came around in Spa.
“It’s a good track for me, I had my first podium in a formula car here in 2015, so I’m very happy.
“The start is not easy: there’s a lot of horsepower in this car, and I am the only driver not coming from GP3, 3.5 or repeating a season, and I was racing with 250hp last year so I’ve struggled with the starts.
“It’s a heavier car and it wheel spins a lot, and it was like this yesterday, but we worked on it overnight and today we could get a good start. It was crucial for the win and gave me the confidence I needed.”
Sette Câmara believes the win will give him the confidence now to improve, but he did admit that his tyres were on the verge of falling off the cliff, and but for a late safety car, called when Nobuharu Matsushita crashed at Raidillon, he could have found himself under attack from Nyck de Vries in the final laps.
“In the last few laps the tyres were going away,” admitted Sette Câmara. “I’m not sure what was the state of Nyck’s tyres but definitely the safety car came at a good time for me.
“Maybe it would have been a fight for the victory in the end, but with or without a fight I’m happy.”