Stefani Mogorovic makes encouraging NASCAR Whelen Euro Series debut
Twenty-year-old Croatian driver Stefani Mogorovic completed her debut weekend in EuroNASCAR at Most, overcoming several challenges including wet conditions before finishing a promising 18th in race two.
Stefani Mogorovic has completed her debut weekend in the NASCAR Whelen Euro Series at Autodrom Most. The twenty-year-old Croatian driver dealt with a number of challenges, including wet conditions and a technical issue in race one, before finishing a promising 18th in race two behind the wheel of the #1 Academy/Alex Caffi Motosport Ford Mustang.
Stefani came into the weekend as a NASCAR Whelen Euro Series rookie and was aiming to improve throughout the weekend, sharing the car with Slovak female driver Michaela Dorcikova. Competing in the Euro NASCAR 2 class, Mogorovic knew the two practice sessions on Friday would be about learning the track and improving on her times.
Running with fellow lady trophy driver Arianna Casoli at the end of the opening session, Mogorovic finished 20th overall. Improving on her best lap time by over ten seconds in final practice, Stefani’s quickest time came on her final lap of the day and placed her 21st and within touching distance of her rivals.
A further challenge was thrown Stefani’s way on Saturday morning with damp conditions for qualifying, with a drying track at Autodrom Most. Mogorovic adapted to the conditions well and gained valuable experience with possible wet weather forecast for the remainder of the weekend. At the end of the session, Stefani had clocked the 20th fastest time, second fastest in the lady trophy class, to round off her debut qualifying in the NASCAR Whelen Euro Series.
"The weekend started off with mixed weather conditions", Mogorovic explained. "Two practices on Friday were important for me in order to learn the track lines since this was my first time at Autodrom Most."
"Saturday’s qualifying was under the wet conditions and I qualified P20 out of 23 drivers.
Stefani was looking forward to gaining further experience in her first ever NASCAR Whelen Euro Series race at Autodrom Most but a technical issue on the warm-up lap led to Mogorovic not being able to take the start. Although it was an unfortunate introduction to the championship, Stefani would still have the chance to compete in race two.
"In Race 1 I had an unfortunate technical failure and I wasn’t able to participate in the race", she summed up. "Thankfully our mechanics solved the problem right away and the car was ready for the upcoming day."
Race two was held in extremely wet conditions with Stefani starting from 20th on the grid. Due to the conditions, the race was started behind the safety car to allow drivers extra time to acclimatise to the conditions. Mogorovic dealt with the start superbly and moved up one position on the first green flag lap, before racing her way to 17th by the end of lap four. Misfortune then struck as the Academy/Alex Caffi Motorsport driver was forced to take a trip to pit lane which lost her a lap to the leading drivers.
With the issue resolved, Stefani rejoined the action and set about improving her lap times while also dealing with lapped traffic. Lap 10 saw Mogorovic set a sizeable personal best time as she became more comfortable with the conditions in her first NASCAR Whelen Euro Series start.
Progressing further in the closing stages, Stefani continued to improve on her sector times and enjoyed a trouble-free second half of the race, crossing the line in 18th.
"Bad weather conditions followed me on Sunday’s morning warm up but even worse and heavier rain in Race 2", she added. "After difficult and challenging race, I finished P18 in EuroNASCAR 2, P6 in Rookie Trophy and P3 in Ladies Trophy."
"It was a pleasure working with Academy Motorsport, the amazing mechanics and teammate Michaela Dorcikova!"
Mogorovic adapted well to challenging conditions at Autodrom Most in her NASCAR Whelen Euro Series debut. The weekend was not without its difficulties with changing track conditions and a technical issue preventing her from taking the start in race one.
Mogorovic raced smartly and continued to improve her lap times, gaining valuable knowledge in a very different style of racing to what she had previously experienced. After getting a taste for the action in the NASCAR Whelen Euro Series, Stefani will likely be aiming to return to the grid in the future. Oschersleben and Zolder are scheduled to round out the EuroNASCAR regular season, and an all-star endurance race is also planned for the 11th November where drivers will head to Mogorovic’s home circuit of Grobnik in Croatia.