Louise Frost impresses at TCR Denmark return
Louise Frost was back in TCR Denmark, making her race debut at the Copenhagen GP event. Despite missing the first two rounds, she had an impressive return, scoring points in each of the three races and with a best finish of P6.
TCR Denmark was back for the third round of its 2021 season on the streets of Copenhagen, on the Bellahøj Park circuit as part of the popular Historic GP event. For the occasion, Louise Frost made her return to the series at the wheel of the TPR Motorsport's Honda Civic Type-R TCR after she was forced to miss the first two rounds due to health reasons. The Copenhagen street circuit was new to Frost – as well as for the whole series – and the weather did not make it easier.
The field of TCR Denmark – one of the largest in Europe – saw 16 cars battling out on a wet qualifying: Michael Markussen was fastest, ahead of Kasper H. Jensen (Massive Motorsport) and championship leader Jan Magnussen in third place. Louise Frost qualified in a respectable 7th position given her lack of track time – also helped by the right tyre choice at the right time in an overall tricky qualifying session.
It was Jensen who moved into the lead at the start, as he passed pole man Markussen for the leading position – but he subsequently dropped back to third soon after due to a mistake. Behind Magnussen, he would witness the championship leader's rare mistake that sent the former F1 driver into the wall. The Safety Car was deployed to recover Magnussen's car, as he was forced to retire.
Jensen again launched an attack to pass Markussen for the lead at the restart, but his attempt to pull away from the pack was halted when Jacob Mathiassen made contact with the wall and required once again the intervention of the Safety Car.
At the end of the first race, Jensen crossed the finish line six tenths of a second ahead of Markussen and Nicolai Sylvest (LM Motorsport) to score the first victory of the weekend.
Louise Frost stayed out of trouble and brought home a remarkable 7th place in her first TCR Denmark race of the season: "In heat 1 I got off to a really good start and was able to keep my position throughout the race", she said after her racing return.
Jan Magnussen was forced to miss the second round of the Copenhagen event as the team was unable to repair his car in time after his crash on Saturday. The reverse grid pole went to Allan Kristensen; he defended his lead at the start of race 2 – while Casper Elgaard passed René Povlsen and Kenn Bach to secure the second position and hunted down Kristensen – ultimately overtaking him for the lead on the second lap. Soon, the track conditions pushed the drivers into mistakes and Gustav Birch hit the wall on lap 6 – with also Johnny Veljebo stopping on track ot the same lap – triggering a Safety Car. The race ended behind the pace car and resulted in Elgaard winning the second race of the weekend ahead of Sylvest and Jensen. Louise Frost managed to score a 6th place in a chaotic race. "In heat 2 I did not really get off to a good start and lost 3 places." – she recalled. "But I had good speed in the car and drove wisely, and that means that I could finish the race in sixth place", said a satisfied Louise. It would be Jensen to start Race 3 from pole and he claimed the lead straight from the lights out. But the rain started to fall on the circuit, when a three car battle was shaping up between Jensen, Markussen and Sylvest up ahead. The lead traded hands several times amidst the tightly fought trio – with the better hand for Jensen, who took the chequered flag with a gap of just half a second ahead of Markussen, followed by Sylvest another six tenths of a second adrift. Jensen's two victories – helped by the two missed rounds after the crash in the first race of the weekend by Magnussen – meant that Jensen climbed to the top of the standings, 4 points clear of Jan Magnussen in the championship. Louise Frost matched her best result in the season so far with another impressive 6th place and added 10 more points to her tally. "In heat 3 everyone was nervous about the weather changing when it started to rain and the sun was still shining once in a while." – she told us. "We chose to drive on full slicks tyres, which was an okay decision. But in the middle of the heat it started to rain and I tried to keep the car on track while driving as fast as possible. I got the car home in sixth place again, which I was really happy about." After she missed two entire racing weekends, Louise Frost made an impressive return into the season, with three point-scoring finishes. And, above all, she was really happy to be back in the driving seat, as she told us: "All in all, it was a really good debut weekend for me. I have missed the team a lot and [I had missed] to race since my absence. Therefore it was really nice to be back in the team and in the car again." The next event of TCR Denmark will take place at Jyllandsringen from 21st to 22nd August.