Zach David's drive at Spa-Francorchamps earns him a FRECA podium

The Malta-licensed Filipino driver Zachary ‘Zach’ David has delivered one of his most stellar performances so far when the Formula Regional European Championship by Alpine (FRECA) visited the Circuit de Spa-Francorchamps over the weekend. He challenged for the lead on Saturday to ultimately secure 3rd place in the Belgian circuit.

Round 2, however, didn’t begin as smoothly as David had hoped for. Setup woes on Friday hindered his progress and left him mid-pack at best during both Testing sessions. But the R-ace GP driver managed to quickly turn things around by Saturday morning and shined through Qualifying held in the wet. He was able to set the 3rd fastest time amongst the Group B runners in the tricky conditions, which later earned him P5 on the grid for Race 1.

David immediately went on attack mode as soon as the lights went off and challenged for the lead as the 31-car grid funneled through Eau Rouge and up towards Raidillon. It then became a 4-car drag race down the Kemmel Straight with David coming out of Les Combes in P2. He then chased after Polish driver Roman Bilinski to take the lead at the end of lap 2. However, it was short-lived and was relegated back to P2 a few corners later.

After maintaining the gap to Bilinski, David came under attack on lap 5 and dropped down to P4. Although he would make an attempt to regain a place in the closing stages of the race, it proved to be unsuccessful and crossed the finish line 4th on the road. But his valiant efforts eventually paid off. A post-race penalty promoted David to a podium position – his very first in FRECA and was officially classified in 3rd.

The following day was not as productive for the 16-year-old. Qualifying back in P14, David had a lot of work to do if he wanted to secure a point-scoring position. But he simply couldn’t replicate his performance from Saturday as he struggled for pace. While he successfully made up a position to P13, the opportunity to make another pass was far and few in between. This left David with no choice, but to settle for 12th place when the chequered flag dropped.

Zach David’s heroic drive at Spa-Francorchamps also earned him his first points in the 2024 FRECA season, which puts him 11th on the Drivers’ Championship after 2 events. Focusing on the positives, he now looks forward to further improving his race results in Round 3 at Circuit Zandvoort in 2 week’s time.

Zach David: “A few ups and downs this weekend at Spa-Francorchamps. After struggling a bit in testing, I’m so happy to turn it around on Saturday qualifying 5th overall. A decent start in Race 1 allowed me to take the lead, but ultimately finished 3rd. Sunday’s race was more difficult with 12th, but I’ll take the positives to Zandvoort for the next round in 2 weeks.”

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