Salom takes first ever podium with brilliant second in team’s home race
Luis Salom rode the ‘race of his life’ in the home race of his RW Racing GP team. The Spaniard gave away a brilliant performance in a race that was red flagged after 14 of 22 laps due to rain. His first podium was a dearly won one.
Salom got away from the start very good, diving into the first corner in third position. The race was declared ‘dry’ but crew chief Hans Spaan had warned Salom: ,,It’s going to rain within ten laps. Make sure you stay close to the leaders and ready to attack, because this race is not going to last for 22 laps.”
Spaan, former winner in Assen, was right. And Salom took notice. He managed to stay in the top 5 all the time, sometimes even leading the pack but always at daggers drawn. ,,It was a heavy fight in front,” Salom admitted. ,,Every inch was a war.”
The team kept a close eye on the number of laps in combination with the weather. When a race is over two third of the number of laps and it starts raining, the last full lap counts for the final result. When Salom understood from his pitboard there were two more laps needed to reach two third of the distance and more raindrops were coming down, he put his head down and took all necessary risks.
“I knew I could make it to second,” Salom explained. ,,Pushing for the podium was quite a risk, because I had already lost the mudguard which meant aerodynamics were disrupted. I really had to push hard to get there, but I knew I could. It wasn’t very slippery, but the last section of the track was very wet.”
“Luis took the challenge at exactly the right moment”, according to Hans Spaan. “In the beginning of the season I predicted he could be on the podium. But I never expected he would do it so soon. Especially not in the home race of the team, where the pressure is on. What Luis has shown here, is really incredible.”
Salom: “A podium alone is special enough but to do it here makes it extra special: for our sponsor TVM, for the team. Team owner Roelof Waninge and crew chief Hans Spaan are giving me all support. I feel at home and comfortable and thanks to that I can give them back this trophy.” Plus 20 valuable points that put Salom in 7th in the standings for the world championship.
Team owner Roelof Waninge was more than proud. “Luis gave the team a wonderful present. He did a great job.”
The next race is scheduled for next weekend already, the Italian GP at Mugello.
Source: RW Racing GP