Riki Christodoulou has seen his Formula Renault UK title hopes dashed following a luckless couple of outings in his debut season in the single-seater series. The former Junior British Karting Champion and Vice-European Karting Champion – who sealed his maiden Formula Renault triumph at Oschersleben in Germany earlier in the summer – suffered a brace of expensive DNFs at Snetterton before a spin in damp practice at Brands Hatch meant that twelfth and seventh places were his best results from two lowly positions on the starting grid.
More gallingly still, the Sutton Coldfield ace had at the time been quickest of all around the challenging Kent track, before overstepping the mark and spinning out at the tight Druids corner. He subsequently struggled in the second qualifying session, leaving him facing a distinct mountain to climb in the two races.
“I was confident and comfortable in practice,” the Fortec star explained, “but losing the rear end of the car just shook me up a little bit and I couldn’t get in the same groove or get the same feeling with the car afterwards.
“I was so far back on the grid for the first race that the marshal asked me if I could see the lights! I looked at him and saw he wasn’t joking. It was wet for the first one and I had a good start but it was tough to pass. I wanted to show what I could do but it was far from easy.
“In the second race I started from tenth position, which was slightly better, and then really enjoyed myself. I made two positions around the outside of Druids and kept a consistent pace and was passing quite a few people. The car’s performance went a bit off when the safety car came out, but then the tyres warmed up again and I was able to take seventh.
“It was far from a good weekend though, and after being hit at Snetterton and also having a mechanical problem in the second race it has been two meetings in a row now without much luck.”
As a result of his run of ill-fortune, the 19-year-old has dropped to seventh in the championship standings, with the final round due to take place next month at the super-fast Thruxton circuit, encouragingly where he registered his best British result to-date with second place back at the start of May.
“The championship is gone now,” he acknowledged, before adding with a steely resolve: “I will keep plugging away though, because I want my first win before the end of the season.”