After a three-week break from racing, Keagan Masters pulled out the stops in Round 6 of the Porsche Mobil 1 Cup held at the Dutch Grand Prix in Zandvoort, Netherlands, from 25 to 27 August.
Masters entered the qualifying rounds rested and well prepared, off the back of the two very challenging previous rounds in late July. The practice laps went according to plan, with no incidents. Unfortunately, the weather changed during the qualifying laps, making conditions tenuous and difficult.
“The track conditions were extremely tricky. It’s important to capitalise on the first 15 minutes of the qualifying laps, in order to set a competitive time. Unfortunately, I wasn’t able to fully use this time to my advantage and therefore I didn’t reach my full potential. This resulted in me getting a P13 going into race one,” says Masters.
Race one, according to Masters, went very well and he managed to gain five places during the race but lost one position towards the end of the race to finish in P9. “This gave me a confidence boost for race two and I managed to make up a place at the start of the second race. However, a little later in the race there was a lot of debris on the main straight and the vehicle in front of me flung up some of the debris, hitting and cracking my left splitter. This resulted in a huge understeer for the final three laps of the race. I managed to hold off the other drivers for the third last and penultimate laps but in the final lap I was passed by another driver, resulting in another P9 finish.”
“We can never control all elements of a race, we can only prepare the vehicle, the driver, and the rest of the team to the best of our ability. What makes the difference between mediocrity and excellence, though, is the ability of the driver to absorb and learn from all the challenges they face on and off the track. Keagan’s fighting spirit came to the fore in the second race, and we are very proud of his tenacity in the face of what can only be described as a potential catastrophe. He made the best of a bad situation and came out wiser and stronger, with his head held high,” says Mpho Elijah Gumbi, who heads up ICAN Management, the South African management company mentoring and supporting Masters overseas.
The final laps were mentally and physically taxing, but Masters remains upbeat, citing his strong defence of his position in very arduous conditions as one of the highlights of the event. “The other was when I overtook Dorian Boccolacci. These two things have instilled great confidence in me for Round 7, the final round of the Porsche Mobil 1 Supercup, being held at Grand Premio D’Italia in Monza from 1 to 3 September. This has been a fantastic season for me, and I have learned immensely from all the races I have participated in. I believe that this is where teamwork comes into play. No man is an island in motorsport, and as a driver, I rely heavily on everyone in my race team to guide me, assist me, and help to motivate me.”
Published by: Allyson Koekhoven
Picture Caption: This has been a fantastic season for Keagan Masters, and he has learned immensely from all the races he has participated in.
Photography by: Porsche Mobil 1 Supercup
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