EINDHOVEN - It wasn’t necessarily an easy weekend for Roderick, but thanks to his fighting spirit he rushed to a handsome fifth place during the final of the second Winter Cup round on Sunday. At the De Landsard circuit in Eindhoven the 11-year-old resident of The Hague again showed he belongs to the quickest in the Minimax category.
Sure, his less than superb qualification and his fifteenth place in the prefinal were less good than he had expected and of course that was frustrating. But Roderick wasn’t maddened because of it during the prelude to the final. Afterwards the talented driver of Taormina Racing returned to the paddock with a big smile on his face: fifth! “I’m happy with the result”, he said. “I just never give up.”
And so Roderick experienced a very rewarding final rehearsal for the upcoming Dutch championships which starts at March 18th in Kerpen (Germany). Regarding the speed the youngster from Zuid-Holland showed in Eindhoven, he’s got every reason to look forward to his second year in the Minimax category. “But I don’t have a specific end result in mind for the championship”, he said. “If I do I might disappoint myself later.”
Wise words from a young driver who nevertheless has often demonstrated that he belongs to the fastest of them all. This he already showed during the prefinal on Sunday. He had to start at the back of the field due to a wrong tire choice during qualifying, but he swiftly stormed to the twelfth place. Determined to overtake some more of his competitors, Roderick kicked it into high gear. Unfortunately, that proved to be a bit too much. He accidentally skipped a corner, left the track and had to relinquish quite a few positions. “Of course that was a bit annoying, but if you grouch over it it won’t lead to anything good.”
So Roderick refused to give up. Tenaciously he focused on recovering as many positions as he could. He succeeded wonderfully and by the time he had clinched the checkered flag he had claimed the fifteenth position. Of course this wasn’t the result he had hoped for, but it had provided him with a decent perspective for the final, the race which obviously was the only really important one for the weekend.
During this final his racing went much better. Roderick had a good start and remained calm until he was ready to strike, a lesson his mechanics Rob and Ronald Knap taught him and which he had bore in mind well. “They said to me: you won’t win the racing during the opening laps. Your tires will still be cold.” This lesson ultimately lead to a beautiful and well-deserved fifth place; Roderick had noticed his mechanics had been right after all. “During the beginning of the race other drivers accelerated away from me, but after a while I came closer and I simply waited for my opportunity.”
It’s one of the main facets in which he improved himself as a driver over the last year. Roderick: “A mental coach helps me to remain calm during races. This goes better and better.” It should lead to beautiful results during the upcoming season, he expects. “First of all I want to learn as much as possible, but I also want to win. After all that’s why I’m here: to win!”
Roderick is supported in his racing activities by: Balkan Basalt, Citronics, Canley Vale Investments, Via Andres, Freem and Racing Sportiva.