Dana Freeman has made an excellent start to her car racing career driving for Daniels Motorsport in Class D of the BRSCC Quaife Fiesta Championship. Despite Dana’s lack of experience in comparison to many of her fellow drivers, she has adapted superbly to circuit racing and currently sits fourth in the Class D standings out of 11 drivers in the highly competitive series. Freeman is currently searching her maiden podium result with a best result of fourth; however, her consistency has been exemplary and is central to the successes she experienced in the opening three rounds of the season.
With just one weekend of car racing experience under her belt prior to this season, Dana was facing a steep learning curve but has made significant progress at every meeting whilst finishing all six races she has taken part in. The opening meeting at Snetterton gave Freeman the opportunity to familiarise herself with the car in both qualifying and a race situation, improving her lap times by over 10 seconds during the course of the weekend. At Silverstone, Dana had her first experience of a safety car restart, in addition to running inside the top-5 and developing her racecraft around cars from different classes. Rockingham saw Freeman’s best qualifying performance to date, and despite a pair of difficult opening laps, Dana’s overtaking skills were highly commendable at a circuit which is extremely tough on the tyres.
Dana’s first weekend of the season brought many positives but she was confident of building upon this at Silverstone, especially considering that she was to benefit from an additional test session leading up to the weekend. Freeman’s weekend got off to a good start with a solid sixth place result in free practice, followed by a seventh place qualifying effort at one of the fastest circuits on the calendar. Despite dropping back at the start of race one, Dana found her rhythm and set extremely competitive lap times during the middle portion of the race to claim a sixth place result, a brilliant effort considering the addition of several more experienced drivers from the first meeting at Snetterton.
Race two provided one of the most action-packed Class D BRSCC Quaife Fiesta Championship races in recent memory with Dana avoiding a number of incidents and executing her first safety car restart superbly. After being involved in a close battle with former podium-placer Steve Ryan, Freeman equalled her best result to date by finishing in fourth, elevating her to third in the Class D standings after the opening two meetings.
Rockingham was always going to be a challenge for Dana with the abrasive surface causing the highest tyre wear out of all the circuits on the calendar. Following a positive test day on the Friday leading up to the weekend, Dana enjoyed her best qualifying performance in the series to date, lining up fifth and within just one second of fellow female driver and teammate Jess King. Unfortunately Freeman didn’t make the best start and fell to ninth on the opening lap of race one, but she showed her resilience to fight back during the 12 lap race, pulling off some wonderful overtakes to finish in seventh, just two seconds away from a top-5 result.
Dana was determined to make a better start in race two as she knew her pace was strong enough to challenge for a top-5 and possibly even a podium with a stroke of good fortune. Although Freeman lost a couple of position on lap one, she was able to recover these on the following lap as she set about chasing the leading pack. Once again executing a number of fantastic overtakes, Dana was showing racecraft well-beyond her years in just her fourth ever car racing meeting and was focussed despite being frustrated over her starts. Despite the race only being 15 minutes long, Freeman was able to climb up to sixth place to claim her second solid result of the weekend at Rockingham. Dana should be pleased with the pace shown throughout the weekend, coupled with the fact that she was one of only a few drivers who appeared to suffer from little tyre degradation in the latter stages of the races.
With her strong and consistent performance to start the season, Freeman currently sits fourth in the BRSCC Quaife Fiesta Championship Class D standings and is the highest placed first year driver. This is an outstanding achievement considering Dana has not taken part in any pre-season testing and she is learning the tracks with each and every passing meeting. Snetterton hosts the fourth round of the championship next month and Freeman is looking forward to returning to the Norfolk track which hosted the opening meeting of the year. Freeman has enjoyed incredible start to her car racing career and she will be looking to maintain this form throughout the year and secure a top-5 overall championship result.