Along with these two victories Racing Engineering had both its drivers on the podium in both races and wins the team championship! Franck Montagny finishes the 2002 World Series by Nissan as vice champion, Justin Wilson came in fourth in the ...
Along with these two victories Racing Engineering had both its drivers on the podium in both races and wins the team championship! Franck Montagny finishes the 2002 World Series by Nissan as vice champion, Justin Wilson came in fourth in the championship.
Racing Engineering is very happy about these results especially as the weekend had not begun at all as expected. Technical problems and a crash in the qualifying session caused Franck to start from only fifth and eighth position. Justin started into the first race from twelfth position, into the second one from second position.
Shortly before the race started heavy rains set in and the race therefore had to be started with the safety car. When the safety car came in and the race was free Zonta went off the track and in lap 6 red flags annulled the race.
At the re-start of race 1 Leinders started in first position, but had been overtaken by Franck as well as Justin, who both have already proven their outstanding performance in the rain earlier this season. Racing Engineering's drivers drove a perfect race under these difficult conditions, which never brought them in danger of losing the first two positions. Franck won the first race followed by Justin. This double not only guaranteed Franck as vice champion but also Racing Engineering as team champions.
The second race, also started on wet tires, was characterized by the amazing starts of Justin in second position as well as Franck leaving the grid eighth. Both not only impressed at the start but also during the first laps, which brought them ahead of the rest. As the track dried up during the obligatory pit stops all four tires were changed from rain tires to slicks on both Racing Engineering cars. Due to the perfect pit stops of Racing Engineering's mechanics Franck and Justin could stay up front until Franck had to come into the pits for a stop and go penalty for speeding in the pit lane. But this couldn't stop Franck, who showed his great talent on this race day, in any way and back on the track he started to fight back and overtake again. When shortly before the end of the race he also overtook Karthikeyan it was clear, that both Racing Engineering drivers finish on the podium again. Justin won the second race, Franck finished third.
After the first season of the World Series Franck Montagny stated, "The beginning of the weekend has been very bad. We had a lot of technical problems. But we had a good finish of the weekend. I am happy about the vice championship!"
Justin Wilson, after a second and first position in Interlagos announced, "I finished the first race second and the second race first, so it went very well. After the pit stop in the second race Franck has been first and would have won the race, if there wasn't the stop and go penalty. We finished team champions and the entire team is very happy."
Alfonso de Orleans said, "It was a wonderful first year in the World Series by Nissan for Racing Engineering. The whole team did a great job and the fact that we are team champions proves it. I would like to thank our two drivers for having the faith in us, a young team before -- though successfully - just participating in Formula 3. But I also want to thank every single member of Racing Engineering as the effort, the will and the discipline of each of them that was necessary for the victories not only in the World Series but also in the Spanish Formula 3. I am happy about Racing Engineering finishing this year as team champions in the World Series and the Formula 3 -- it was hard work."