Rafael Camara wins the first race at Spa Francorchamps and confirms his leadership in the Formula Regional European Championship by Alpine

It was a heart-pounding race in the Formula Regional European Championship by Alpine at Spa Francorchamps, where Rafael Camara (Prema Racing) clinched his second win of the season. The Ferrari Driver Academy standout delivered an outstanding performance, climbing from sixth to first in the final stages, and fiercely defending his lead against Noah Strømsted (RPM) until the last corner. The Danish driver finished second, which also earned him the gold medal among the rookies, a particularly competitive category this 2024. However, post-race penalties relegated Strømsted to fourth due to a track exit at turn 19, which gave him an advantage while battling Camara for the lead.

Roman Bilinski crossed the line in third, showing excellent pace. The Trident driver, who secured his first pole position in the series earlier that morning, led much of the race, holding off initial attacks from Enzo Peugeot (Sainteloc Racing), who started from the front row but dropped to sixth after attempting an overtake at Lacombe. Bilinski later battled with Zachary David (R-ace GP), who briefly took the lead after a brilliant move at the Bus-Stop. However, both drivers eventually ceded to Camara and Strømsted, with Bilinski finishing third and David fourth. Strømsted’s penalty promoted Bilinski to second and opened the podium’s third step for David. Enzo Peugeot was also penalized for a similar situation after gaining ground in a maneuver against Alessandro Giusti (ART Grand Prix), who was also penalized for a similar reason while battling with Matteo De Palo (Sainteloc Racing) at turn 5, during another intense phase of the race. Therefore, De Palo took fifth place, with Peugeot finishing sixth and Giusti seventh.

Spa (BEL) MAY 23-26, 2024 – Second round of the Formula Regional European Championship by Alpine 2024 at Circuit Spa-Francorchamps. Start race 1. © 2024 Dutch Photo Agency.

Brando Badoer (Van Amersfoort Racing) performed well to finish eighth, ahead of Enzo Deligny (R-ace GP) and Nikhil Bohra (MP Motorsport), who was also penalized by two positions while fighting for the top 10 with Badoer.

Rafael Camara – Prema Racing

“What a race! Starting from sixth in this championship where overtaking is tough and achieving this result is amazing. We managed the race well, though it wasn’t easy at the start, but it was really fun. It’s been a while since I had such a race. We secured important points for the championship, where consistency is key to achieving big goals. A special thanks to the entire Prema team for their excellent work. Unfortunately, we couldn’t put together a good qualifying session, but we always had the right speed. We knew we could win, and we did.”

Roman Bilinski – Trident

“All in all, it was a great race considering we started on used tires unlike the others. We knew entering the race like this would be challenging. It’s a shame we couldn’t get the win, but we showed the team’s hard work deserves significant results.”

The series will be back in action tomorrow morning at 9:05 for the second qualifying session of the day, while the final race of the weekend will take place at 15:10.

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