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  • Writer's pictureVIVIEN STREBELOW

Linda Vekka kicks off DS3 Cup Denmark season in style with P2

Linda Vekka started her racing season on a high, a second place finish which represents her best ever result in the DS3 Cup Denmark. With a strong season opener, the Finnish racer proved she can be in the fight for the title.

Photo by Kim Gripping, courtesy of Linda Vekka

Padborg Park circuit hosted the 2023 DS3 Cup Denmark season opener last weekend - the spectacular one-make series that supports the fast-growing TCR Denmark and that represents an increasingly competitive entry point for competitive touring cars in Scandinavia. After a frustrating end to last year´s season at the same track, series returnee Linda Vekka was hungry to show more of her potential - and certainly did so with an amazing drive around the 2,15 kilometre long Danish track over the weekend.

Already the qualifying session proved that the Finnish driver had made a significant step forward, as she was fourth fastest, securing a start from the second row. Martin Jensen claimed pole position, ahead of Niklas Abrahamsen.

Race 1

There was drama even before the green flag in race 1, with one car coming to a halt on the formation lap which delayed the start for a couple of minutes before the lights finally went out for the first time this season. Pole sitter Jensen had a difficult start and dropped down to 8th place, while Bannergaard instantly took over the lead of the race.

Linda Vekka had a good start as well, slided into turn one and made up one place to slot in third, until the Safety Car was deployed. When the race resumed, Abrahamsen suddenly slowed down and dropped down the order - promoting Linda Vekka to second.

Behind her, a tough battle for the last podium spot saw several cars trading places, until Jensen and Lorenzen eventually pulled away, remaining the only drivers in contention for third.

In the leading group, the the black-pink liveried Citroen of Vekka steadily closed the gap to the leader, but as the clock ticked down, she finished the first race of the season with as second place finish - her best result to date in the series which marks an amazing start of her 2023 campaign.

"There is still another start ahead, but let's enjoy this one carefully first", Vekka said. "Last year, I felt so numb when I left Padborg that I couldn't even fathom it, but this feels incredibly good."

Race 2

In the following race, Vekka started from 5th on the grid and instantly made up a position at the start, with the lead of the race being contested between Bannergaard and Jensen.

The second race was a bit more troubled and the Finnish driver of the #17 car also had issues when a driver ahead suddenly spun and Vekka had no room to avoid the accident. Her great weekend had an early end, as she was forced to pit.

She rejoined the race but shortly after, Vekka was back in the pits to protect the engine from potential damage and retired from the race - leaving Padborg Park with a bittersweet emotion after the highs of race 1.

Meanwhile the battle for the lead between Bannergaard and Abrahamsen continued with the latter passing Bannergaar for the lead with 7 minutes to go and pulling away quickly. Bannergaard had come under pressure from Jonas and slowly dropped down.

Abrahamsen won the second race of the weekend, ahead of Jonas and Silas Rytter.

The DS3 Cup Denmark season will resume from 9th to 11th June at Rudskogen - with another chance for Linda Vekka to showcase her huge progression at the Norwegian round, the only race outside Denmark in the series.



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