Will Bratt is hoping to cash in his previous race-winning experience at Belgium’s Zolder circuit as he seeks to haul in the Formula Two championship-leading trio of Jolyon Palmer, Dean Stoneman and Philipp Eng.
Between them, the three pace-setters have so far taken every win and all but one second place this season, but Bratt is best of the rest in fourth with two podiums and believes his results will improve now that he is more familiar with the F2 car.
The series is holding a test at Zolder today (June 15) as part of the preparation for its races there this weekend, but Bratt has the advantage of having raced there last season when he took a victory as part of his Euroseries 3000 championship-winning season.
He said: “F2 is very competitive and there are some really quick drivers at the front. Hopefully though my experience at Zolder from F3000 will pay dividends.
“Zolder is quite a technical track, it took me a little while to get my head around it fully when I visited there for the first time last year in Euroseries 3000 but by the second race of the weekend we were able to dominate with a clear win. Once you have the car in the groove, it’s a great track to drive so I’m really looking forward to going back there.”
Earlier in the season Bratt had difficulty adjusting to the Formula Two car – the third type of single-seater he had raced in short succession following his Euroseries 3000 and GP2 Asia stints – telling Brits on Pole at Silverstone: “I haven’t quite got that confident feel in the car yet. This F2 car has got its own characteristics – it’s been a bit like driving in Formula Renault again, engaging my brain to drive that sort of car again.”
But by the end of the Monza weekend, where he finished fourth and third and believes a clutch problem cost him the race two victory, he believed he was well on the way to coming to terms with it: “We’re three rounds in now and I’m definitely starting to feel more at home with the car now.”
As a result, he is aiming for the sort of double victory that Palmer recorded at Monza. Speaking after setting the third-best time in the opening test session, he said: “We’re definitely aiming for another step forward and I’m focussed on fighting for two wins, that should be the aim for every weekend from now on. I’m not complacent ahead of the weekend but we should have a good chance of going well.
“Realistically, I should have had my first F2 win at Monza, but the clutch problem ended those hopes. Hopefully at Zolder we can have a problem-free weekend, take away a lot of points from both races and hopefully a win.”