Lausitz 2017 reactions: Challenger Class FP 1 and 2

Day one for the Challengers in the Lausitz track

Astles before her FP2 run

It's been all action so far as the Challenger Class pilots tested their mettle in the track today and it's only Free Practice 1 and 2. Here's what the pilots had to say after their first taste of the Lausitzring in 2017...

Florian Bergér
"The track is the same as last year overall, but some of the gates are somewhat different. I think I had the best net time in Free Practice 2, but I'm still trying to figure out the best line. This is my home race and I have friends here – it's really cool to have the home crowd."

Daniel Ryfa
"I didn't race at the last stop, but things came back to me quickly here and I had a decent time. I just went full force, and that's what I'll do in Qualifying tomorrow and all weekend."

Luke Czepiela
"I have good memories from two podiums at the races here last year, and I hope to finish on the podium again this time. My first Free Practice was rocky with penalties, but in the second one my time was close to the others. There are minor changes to the track this year that I think are going to make it even more fun to fly once I'm really back in the saddle."

Mélanie Astles
"It was a really good feeling in the track this afternoon. This morning I was discovering the track and this afternoon I flew more aggressively to find the lines. Last year we were flying 1:04s and this year we're flying under a minute, it goes to show how far we've all come and how the standard is getting better. I can feel it in my own flying. I think this is the hardest race of the year so far, because everyone is on form and well prepared. It's all very close and I have to fly my best to make sure I'm in Indy."

Ben Murphy
"I'm getting more comfortable in the track, and that's always how it is – at first you're feeling your way. There are a lot of fast times in the field. Error-free is the key for me at this race, and so far that's what I'm managing to do."

Daniel Genevey
"The track is not easy, there's a lot to learn especially at Gates 3 and 4. In my first flight I didn't catch the right line and was slow. I also didn't think about the pylons being at different heights. This is something that you don't have over water-based tracks. My second flight was much better and I feel that I still need to work on my lines, but I'm happy with my improvement."

The Challengers will be fighting it out in Qualifying tomorrow. Follow all the action HERE.