Vandoorne knuckles his success Stoffel Vandoorne signs yet another victory and passes very close to a complete success... only the best lap in race will have escaped him this weekend. He leaves Spa-Francorchamps with 62 points, that is 18 more...
Vandoorne knuckles his success
Stoffel Vandoorne signs yet another victory and passes very close to a complete success... only the best lap in race will have escaped him this weekend. He leaves Spa-Francorchamps with 62 points, that is 18 more than Paul Lanchere his new rival, yet again present on the podium with, for the first time of the season, Franck Matelli.
Heavy rain starts falling on the Belgian layout at the time of the second race of the weekend. On the starting grid, Mathieu Jaminet, author of the 7th time, takes off in 11th position following a penalty inflicted by the Marshals Office at the issue of the first race. However, Stoffel Vandoorne remains at the head of the grid in front of Norman Nato, Franck Matelli and Paul Lanchere. The pole man is able to keep his position whereas behind him, everybody is trying to get in first. There are virtually six drivers who come up in front next to each other. Paul Lanchere is able to make the best of the situation followed by Franck Matelli and Norman Nato who tempts not to loose contact. Alexandre Mantovani, as for him, insists behind Alexandre Jouannem-Sivan. The ACO-AutoHebdo Steering Wheel Trophy holder multiplies the attacks, in vain. Jean-Baptiste Lahaye observes and waits for one of his predecessors to make a mistake.
In front, Paul Lanchere increases the rhythm and comes back on the leader Vandoorne whereas Franck Matelli drives a solo, just like Norman Nato. Alexandre Mantovani has finally overtaken and is now attacking Norman Nato for the 4th position. As far as Jean-Baptiste Lahaye is concerned, he pockets 5th position to the despair of Alexandre Jouannem-Sivan. This quartet is really very close to each other Alexandre Mantovani seems to be very piercing, maybe a little too much as he makes a mistake that profits to Jean-Baptiste Lahaye. But the ACO Steering Wheel Trophy holder does not give up and continues to chase.
The gap between the three men at the head of the race stabilises itself and its now the trio Nato, Lahaye and Mantovani who assure the show. As from then on, their pursuers come back in their stream with Alexandre Jouannem-Sivan as leader in front of Tristan Papavoine, Pierre Sancinena and Mathieu Jaminet. In the 7th lap, Jean-Baptiste Lahaye overtakes Norman Nato then Alexandre Mantovani does the same. The former French Go-kart Team member seems to be in difficulty; Alexandre Jouannem-Sivan also overtakes him in this same lap. Mathieu Jaminet does the same by overtaking Pierre Sancinena. Whilst trying to overtake Jean-Baptiste Lahaye, Alexandre Mantovani makes a 360o. spin but re-enters the track, behind Alexandre Jouannem-Sivan. At the same moment, Tristan Papavoine makes a spin in the Fagnes corner.
Following the example of the first race, the podium is well shaped out with yet another victory, the 3rd consecutive, for Stoffel Vandoorne in front of Paul Lanchere, yet again on the 2nd step, and Franck Matelli who celebrates his first podium this season. But after having been summoned by Race Officials, Paul Lanchere comes out with a 10 second penalty for the non respect of the race line and therefore only pockets the points of 3rd position.
Stoffel Vandoorne: " Paul was faster in the 2nd sector and I therefore observed him in order to do the same and to take more advance. I am really satisfied with this weekend. Can't wait to get to Magny-Cours."
Paul Lanchere: " Firstly, I would like to thank my father who is my greatest supporter and who is always here for me! Also, I would like to give an enormous thanks to the team, especially to Jose and Malo. My departure was really good as I came up in 2nd position. I came back on Stoffel's back but lost a lot of time in the last part of the circuit otherwise I believe I could have taken advantage. I haven't won, but that will come! "
Franck Matelli: " At last a podium for the beginning of this season! I was able to overtake Norman at the beginning but it was very difficult to follow the rhythm at first. At mid race, things weren't evolving much but in the last laps, I was able to come back on Paul. What a pity there weren't a few more laps to go! I would also like to thank the Technical and Sports Staff of Auto Sport Academy, my mechanic but also my father and coach who follow me on all circuits a special thanks to my sponsors without whom none of this would be possible. "