Albuquerque hits the jackpot! Filipe Albuquerque today claimed his first victory in World Series Formula Renault 3.5. Thanks to his team's excellent pit stop strategy, Epsilon Euskadi's Portuguese driver came home ahead of Fairuz Fauzy ...
Albuquerque hits the jackpot!
Filipe Albuquerque today claimed his first victory in World Series Formula Renault 3.5. Thanks to his team's excellent pit stop strategy, Epsilon Euskadi's Portuguese driver came home ahead of Fairuz Fauzy (Cram Competition) and Ben Hanley (Prema Power Team).
Guillaume Moreau (KTR) made a good start from pole position, unlike Alvaro Barba (Draco Racing) who found himself swallowed up by the main field. Filipe Albuquerque drew level with the polesitter going into the first corner, but Moreau managed to hold him off. Further back, Bertrand Baguette, Carlos Iaconelli, Alvaro Barba, Alessandro Ciompi and Michael Herck all crashed out of the race in a series of incidents.
Moreau completed lap one ahead of Albuquerque, Van der Garde, Fauzy, Molina, Hanley, NuÃ±ez, Valsecchi, Jousse and Walker. The safety car then came out to allow the marshals to clear the stricken cars from the circuit.
Racing resumed at the end of lap 6. Guillaume Moreau immediately dived into the pits to make his tyre change. Miguel Molina and Davide Valsecchi then followed suit, leaving Filipe Albuquerque in the lead. On the next lap, Fairuz Fauzy, Alejandro NuÃ±ez, Alvaro Parente and Mikhail Aleshin also gambled on an early pit stop.
At the front, Albuquerque managed to build up a small lead over Van der Garde and Hanley. Vettel was back up to fourth, just ahead of Pavlovic, Duran and Kimball. Moreau lost the most ground during his pit stop, as he found himself behind Fauzy and Jousse, who had by then had also stopped!
Held up by Van der Garde, Hanley decided to come in on lap 11. Kimball did the same. Four leading drivers had not yet made their pit stop on lap 15: Albuquerque, Van der Garde, Vettel and Duran. Van der Garde and Vettel both stopped on lap 12.
But then there was drama as Alvaro Parente was forced to retire for the first time this year! Albuquerque and Duran made their pit stops on laps 13 and 14. Albuquerque came back in the lead, ahead of Fauzy, Hanley, Vettel, Jousse, Moreau, Van der Garde, Pavlovic, Duran and NuÃ±ez. Duran was handed a drive through penalty for speeding in the pit lane, allowing Aleshin to move up into the top 10.
Moreau managed to find a way past Jousse, taking fifth place just before the safety car was brought out once again. The race then resumed for two more laps. Guillaume Moreau proved again that it is possible to overtake at the Hungaroring as he grabbed fourth spot from Vettel!
Filipe Albuquerque: "I made a very good start as I managed to draw level with Moreau. After the safety car went off, I was able to push very hard because the car was perfectly balanced. The strategy was the right one, but pit stop itself wasn't great. These things happen. The car was very difficult to drive towards the end of the race."
Fairuz Fauzy: "The team prepared a very consistent car for me. I did well in qualifying, I made a good start, but I lost a place because I was on the outside of the track. I tried hard not to make any mistakes and to preserve the tyres, so that I could make a late pit stop. I'm very happy to be on the podium."
Ben Hanley: "On the first lap, I tried hard to keep out the way of the various accidents: I was 12th on the grid and 6th at the end of lap one! I pushed hard at the end of the race to apply some pressure on the front two but they didn't make any mistakes."