Dennis Hauger was promoted to third place after Formula 2’s sprint race at Spa-Francorchamps after Richard Verschoor was disqualified, but still “hoped for more”.
The MP Motorsport driver completed a solid race, but he reckoned he could have achieved more had he kept the positions he gained off-the-line from fifth on the grid. The Red Bull junior challenged Rodin Carlin’s Enzo Fittipaldi for third place at turn one, but eventually closed the opening lap in sixth.
“I just came in some wet patch, I think, in turn one exit and just got a lot of wheelspin and couldn’t get the exit right,” Hauger explained to Formula Scout in the paddock.
“After, we got past Boschung and Vesti in the same place a few laps apart and I was pretty happy with the move.”
The Norwegian was back up to fourth on lap five of 17, and from there on he pressured ART Grand Prix’s Theo Pourchaire for what was then the last podium spot. However, he never managed to properly attack him despite being within DRS range.
“He [Pourchaire] was able to get the exits right and just had a good rear on the low speed in the first corner and managed to get a decent exit. I just never managed to really gain so much time on him in the straights, I don’t know why, but just couldn’t quite get close enough.
“I was never really in a position to try and pass. I got at some point maybe a bit alongside him braking quite deep into turn five. But other than that, I was never going to be in a position to try and overtake him. He just had to defend a bit and that was it.
“We have to look into that obviously and try to see what we can do to, at least try to help to get closer before Eau Rouge. But I don’t know if he just has a good top speed or we need to do something else.
“It was a good race. I hoped for more. Obviously with Fittipaldi winning, I was alongside him into turn one with the start we had, so it could have been more. But from where we ended up after lap one, it was a good position, I think.”
Hauger affirmed that being third after Verschoor’s disqualification “it’s not making a big difference”, but admitted “it’s always nice to pick up some more points and a trophy”. He also emphasised the need to focus on the feature race, where most points are awarded.
“Strategy will play a part, especially in the position we are in,” he said. “Some people will probably go prime-option around me to try and go long and be free.
“The track is probably going to be a bit better tomorrow. Now, it was really green, really low grip.
“We’ll analyse a bit more tonight and then do a few tweaks here and there.”