Nerea Martí claims another podium at Zandvoort

The Spaniard delivered a strong performance on Dutch soil and finished third in Race 1. Lovinfosse and Cáceres made it into the points-paying positions

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Mercantile Campos Racing experienced a positive weekend of F1 Academy at Zandvoort, which hosted the fourth round of the 2023 season. Spaniard Nerea Martí stepped onto the rostrum and scored points in all the three races. France’s Lola Lovinfosse and Uruguay’s Maite Cáceres also scored points for the championship. It was the first time in the case of Cáceres, which proves the continuous progress of the Uruguayan driver.

After free practice sessions, Saturday kicked off with both qualifying sessions very early in the morning. In Q1, Martí put herself in contention for the pole position and finally the Spaniard female talent clocked a time of 1m36.829s to qualify in third place on the starting grid for Race 1. Lovinfosse posted a best lap time of 1m37.863s and set to start from 11th and Cáceres put together a lap of 1m38.782s. In Q2, Martí set a lap of 1m36.851s and took 6th spot on the starting grid for the final race of the weekend. Lovinfosse rounded out the top-ten with her lap of 1m37.418s and Cáceres qualified in 15th with her best qualifying lap of 1m38.298s.

Race 1 got saw closely-fought action from the very early stages. Martí dropped to fourth as Marta García moved past her on lap 2. But the driver of Mercantile Campos Racing never gave up. Both Spaniards pulled away from the fifth classified driver and finally, on lap 10, Martí regained the third place after overtaking García. In the remaining 17 laps, Martí fended off her rivals to cross the finish line in third place. Lovinfosse fought back to finish in ninth place with Cáceres in 14th.

On Sunday, Race 2 took place very early in the morning. Martí, who had started from sixth on the grid, took the checkered flag in the same position but still adding more points to her tally. Lovinfosse and Cáceres finished in 11th and 13th place respectively with the two other Mercantile Campos Racing-run Tatuus cars.

In the final race, Martí got involved in several battles and finally brought another 6th place home, which was a rewarding and positive weekend. Cáceres’ best performance came in Race 3 as she made her way through the field to conquer a tenth place at the end. Unfortunately, Lovinfosse couldn’t reach the end as she was forced to retire after making contact with Abbi Pulling at T9.

Martí had moved up to fourth in the drivers’ standings with 96 points to her name. Besides, she reduced the deficit with the leader. Mercantile Campos Racing sits fifth in the teams’ standings.

The fifth round of the season will take place at Monza on 8-9 July.