Valdeno Brito led the second race almost entirely and lost the podium on the final stretch. Photo: Cleocinei Zonta
The races on Sunday, 24, required more than technical effort from Prati-Donaduzzi team. It was a day when high emotions took over the box. After a tricky qualifying, with Valdeno Brito starting 14th and Julio Campos 20th, the strategy of being in the top 10 in the first race worked. The drivers finished in 9th (Valdeno) and in 10th (Julio).
With the reverse-grid in the second race, the first row of the race was purple, with both drivers starting in the first positions. Valdeno started well and led the second race almost entirely, but Ricardo Maurício surpassed him only at the end. However, at the finish line, without fuel, he lost two more positions that took him off the podium – he finished in fourth. Julio finished in sixth. He continues in the fight for the title, which was the main objective of the stage.
Faced with the frustration of losing a podium that came so close, team leader Rodolpho Mattheis explains that Valdeno's car's lack of fuel on the final stretch was due to a phenomenon called steam lock. This happens when the temperature rises sharply and the fuel evaporates, blocking the transmission to the engine.
“When you are leading the second race with a chance of winning, but suddenly you lose the podium, it is very disappointing for the team. We put in the scheduled fuel, but I believe that steam lock happened. We are going to investigate to see if that is what happened. Nevertheless, it was a shame. We had a guaranteed second place. The first place could not really come due to the lack of push, and Ricardinho had more tire in the second race than us. However, the second was meant to be ours”, says Mattheis.
Valdeno Brito also returns home with a feeling of “I could have gotten more”. “We started the first race with the goal of reaching the top 10. In the second, even with more worn tires, I was able to reach a very good pace. I was ahead of those who put little fuel after the pit stop, but in the fight with Ricardinho I had difficulty keeping his pace, because he had newer tires. However, second place on the podium would be guaranteed if fuel shortage problem had not emerged in the last three laps. It started to fail a lot. Unfortunately, we were not able to reach the podium. It was frustrating. However, we know that we have the good car to recover this podium that was lost today in Interlagos”, he says.
Julio remains in the fight for the title
With a first recovery race - Julio went from 20th to 10th – and in the second race, he finished in sixth, the driver from Curitiba could keep himself in the race for the title. “With Julio, we started 52 points behind the leader, Daniel Serra. Mathematically, we can reach the title. We are still candidates even though we are a little far in the standings. We are in 5th place in the overall standings, one point behind Rubinho (3rd place) and 23rd from Ricardinho (runner-up). So, anything may happen in the last race”, says Mattheis.
Julio made a positive balance and celebrated reaching the final with chances of being champion for the first time in his career. “One weekend that at the start of the first race I had a bad time with Bia, because she did not see me and the crash ended up damaging the front bars of my car. We lost speed with that and got slow on the straights. Even so, we managed to keep the schedule of finishing among the 10 in the first race and closing the second in the first six. That was exactly what happened. The most important thing is that we reached the end of the championship competing for the title. We are in the strongest category in the country. We had several complicating factors throughout the stages, yet we got in the race and we have to celebrate for it. We will fight for this title until the last flag! ”
The grand final of 2019 Stock Car season takes place on December 15 at Interlagos Circuit in São Paulo, SP.
Prati-Donaduzzi, the 100% capital Brazilian pharmaceutical industry, is specialized in the development and production of generic drugs. Based in Toledo, western Paraná, Prati-Donaduzzi produces about 11.5 billion therapeutic doses per year and has about 4,200 employees. The company has one of the largest portfolios of generic drugs in Brazil* and aims to grow its sales and production capacity by 15% in 2019.
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