Zolder season opener pre-race notes

Roll on Zolder! With collective testing in Barcelona, Le Mans and at the Nurburgring, the World Series Formula Renault 3.5 teams have already visited three circuits on the 2006 race calendar before the season has even begun. Now, they have all...

Roll on Zolder!

With collective testing in Barcelona, Le Mans and at the Nurburgring, the World Series Formula Renault 3.5 teams have already visited three circuits on the 2006 race calendar before the season has even begun. Now, they have all returned to base to fine tune their equipment before the championship curtain-raiser in Zolder. But in the meantime the Formula Renault 2.0 and Megane Trophy cars will also be on track again at the Paul Ricard circuit.

Toccacelo is back!
After winning the first ever World Series Formula Renault 3.5 race in Zolder last season, Enrico Toccacelo cut short his season to join the Minardi F1 team as a test driver. The runner-up in F3000 in 2004 now returns to the World Series as part of the Eurointernational team. He replaces Tor Graves.

A century for Carlin!
If there is one team that it is in the spotlight at the moment, it has to be Carlin Motorsport. The British team took its one hundredth victory last weekend. The team already has eight wins to its name in the World Series by Nissan and World Series by Renault and will be looking to Colin Fleming and Mikhail Aleshin to add to that tally in 2006! Trevor Carlin has also confirmed that he wants his team to be running in F1 from 2008. All this with the blessing of Max Mosley!

World Series by Renault goes stateside!
Three drivers who took part in the World Series last year have decided to make the move to Champ Car. The Belgian driver Jan Heylen, winner of the Eurocup Megane Trophy 2005, has signed for Dale Coyne Racing. Will Power, who finished 7th overall in the World Series Formula Renault 3.5 with two wins to his name, will unsurprisingly be racing for Team Australia. These two drivers took 7th and 9th respectively in the opening race at Long Beach. The French driver Simon Pagenaud is also racing for Team Australia in Champ Car Atlantic, the entry-level category for Champ Car. He finished an impressive fourth this weekend.

Ammermuller does it again!
Michael Ammermuller is somewhat of a specialist when it comes to making a flying start to a season. Think back to last year's Eurocup Formula Renault 2.0 in which the German took four wins from the first four races! Now in GP2, he has won the second race of the opening meeting in Valencia. Adrian Valles also put in a remarkable performance with a podium finish in race one. These two set an example to be followed by Tristan Gommendy, Felix Porteiro and Andreas Zuber, three other drivers to have switched from the World Series by Renault to the GP2 Series this season.

Last call for collective testing
Eurocup Formula Renault 2.0 competitors are currently in Zolder for collective testing. On April 18 and 19, they will be at the Paul Ricard circuit for a final pre-season test before the racing action gets underway in Zolder. The Eurocup Megane Trophy drivers will then take to the track at the circuit in the South of France for the following two days.

-renault-

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About this article
Series Formula V8 3.5
Drivers Tor Graves , Tristan Gommendy , Jan Heylen , Will Power , Adrian Valles , Felix Porteiro , Andreas Zuber , Simon Pagenaud , Mikhail Aleshin , Trevor Carlin , Dale Coyne , Michael Ammermüller
Teams Dale Coyne Racing , Carlin