After crashing from the lead in Race 2 of Round 1 in Barcelona, Matteo Nannini says he’s learned from the experience, insisting that his focus will be on “getting points” as he prepares to start from the front row in the opening race of Round 3.

Although Nannini admitted he wasn’t fully satisfied with P11 in what proved to be a messy Qualifying session, the HWA RACELAB racer was boosted by his P2 placing on the reverse grid.

“Starting from the front will make our race easier,” said Nannini. “You can manage the races much better and hopefully we can stay out of trouble. Qualifying was a bit of a mess and managing the traffic was quite difficult. I was not completely satisfied with our final run: I feel that we could have done much better.

“The potential is there and P11 is a good starting point, especially on the (reverse) grid tomorrow, when we will start from second. In the first lap, I won’t take too many risks.

Nannini will start from the front row on the reverse grid in Race 1
Nannini will start from the front row on the reverse grid in Race 1

“I know from the pre-season tests that we should have really strong race pace here. The degradation is not so high so we can almost push 100% in every lap. The initial part of the race will be crucial. We’ll need to pull a gap before DRS is activated. Otherwise, we’ll have the guys behind chasing with DRS and that’s tricky.”

The Italian cut a frustrated figure in France, where he failed to score after qualifying back in 13th, a result that left him lingering as low as 10th in the Championship.

Still only three rounds into the season, there’s time for Nannini to make up that ground, but the Italian believes it has to start at the Red Bull Ring.

“The most important thing for me will be getting points,” said Nannini. “We didn't score at Paul Ricard, and it is very important for me to take points here if I want to be in a high position in the championship.

Nannini is currently 10th in the Drivers Championship
Nannini is currently 10th in the Drivers' Championship

“Our aim is to win the championship, and after Barcelona I really believed that, but Paul Ricard was tough. We lost a lot of points compared to the leaders. And, without the crash in Race 2 In Barcelona, I would have been one of the top guys in the championship.

“The important thing is to make up as many points as possible here. P11 is a good starting point for Race 1 tomorrow. Not so much for Race 3, which is the most important race of the weekend, but we will see what we can do.”