Qatar based driver Charlie Frijns has been reflecting on his incredible season of competition in the Porsche GT3 Cup Challenge Middle East, as he looks to learnings from previous rounds as the key to his success in the upcoming finale of Season 8. After ten races across six months and three of the region’s most famous racing circuits, the final round of Season 8 is closing in and the Middle East’s top motor racers have their sights firmly set on the championship silverware. For Charlie Frijns the upcoming weekend will be a huge occasion on top of what has been one of the most competitive editions of the series ever, especially in his chase for the gold category title.
On April 15 and 16 the Porsche GT3 Cup Challenge will power into Bahrain where Round 6 will take on the role of support race for the 2017 Formula 1 Gulf Air Bahrain Grand Prix weekend.
The added theatre, excitement and attention of Formula 1 is something Frijns hopes to use as motivation for success, not a distraction. “It’s a huge occasion for all of the drivers in the championship, the added excited and pressure can really play a part in the result. And for me I need two of the best performances of my season in this final round.” The first round of Season 8 bought mixed emotions for the young Qatar resident, after a disappointing fifth place finish in Race 1, Frijns then laid down a marker of intent in the second race with an incredible performance earning him his first race win in three years. From then on, the battle for the top of the standings was on, and with the points being so close throughout the opening rounds, it was difficult to tell who would cross the finish line in the top three positions in each race.
By the time the series reached the halfway stage of the season with six races down, things had still not opened up in the championship standings with Charlie Frijns and Irish driver Ryan Cullen was locked on 90 points each. The tight separation continued through Round 4 after which just 63 points separated the top six drivers in the overall standings.
The championship returned to Bahrain for the penultimate round of the season with Charlie Frijns knowing that every single point would count. After a fourth and third place finish in both races of Round 5, Frijns allowed Cullen to pull a 33 point gap at the top of championship standings. With a total of 50 points on offer in the final two races of the season, Frijns will be hoping to find the same form he showed here in the second race of the season, and give everything he has to fight for the championship title.
Frijns said, “I said from the very beginning of Season 8 that consistency would play an important part in my championship campaign. Over the first few rounds, I displayed the form I needed, and by the halfway stage of the season found myself in a very strong position at the top of the overall standings. Every race has been so close, with some of the newer and younger drivers showing some impressive determination and skill.”