A Challenging Season

Last racing weekend at Sonoma Raceway in California marked the end of the 2014 racing season for me.

It’s been a strangely short one, with most racing series I’ve been running in the past only having a season finale somewhere in the middle of October. Nonetheless, the compressed calendar was really exciting, with a lot of non-stop action, racing almost every month at least once apart from June, during which we had a two day collective test at Mid-Ohio to guarantee my monthly adrenaline rush!

All in all, it’s been a very trying season for me for various reasons. The Winterfest championship already got off to an unfortunate start with many technicals while further bad breaks plagued me from the start and it never really seemed to leave throughout the season. It’s very disappointing for a team and a racing driver to not be able to always show what they’re fully capable off. We did on some occasions though, which were typically the days when we didn’t run into major issues and I’m happy that we were able to show we are genuine front runners.

We were among the fastest at Lucas Oil Raceway, at Mid-Ohio in the official collective test and we were very fast at Sonoma as well. With a great car underneath me, we qualified well inside the top 4 and if it weren’t for some scrappy races, should have at least finished there based on raw pace.

Even though this season may not have been what I was aiming for, I’m very thankful for the experience because it has made me a better driver and man and I’ve been working with some of the best people I’ve ever met.

I cannot stress the importance of every individual at Belardi Auto Racing enough. They work long hours at the workshop and even longer ones at the racing track far away from home and their families, always working meticulously on providing me with the best car possible. They made me feel very welcome and instantly part of the team even though I joined virtually mid-season, which is something I’m very thankful for! We win and lose together and it’s very rewarding to see how happy they are when their hard work pays off!

Mixed seasons like this provide harsh but useful lessons on intangibles like dealing with disappointments, constantly adapting yourself to many variables, pushing yourself to and sometimes beyond the limit, working methodically and closely with the people inside the team to achieve better results and ultimately, to learn to appreciate the joys and motivation of even the smallest breakthroughs!

The end of this season also marks the start of the new one. I’m already really looking forward to 2015 and am already working harder than ever on every aspect of my craft to come back a much better driver!

Thank you all for your support this year, it means a lot to me! Keep you posted next season!

Jeroen

Friday Aug 29, 2014
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