EU 2.0: Nurburgring Friday practice notes

Weather proves decisive The Eurocup Formula Renault 2.0 drivers experienced very variable climatic conditions during today's collective testing: dry conditions this morning, followed by rain this afternoon. Chris Van der Drift (JD Motorsport)...

Weather proves decisive

The Eurocup Formula Renault 2.0 drivers experienced very variable climatic conditions during today's collective testing: dry conditions this morning, followed by rain this afternoon. Chris Van der Drift (JD Motorsport) and Filipe Albuquerque (Motopark Academy) produced the sessions' best times.

In the end, only 39 drivers take to the start this weekend, after the SL Formula team withdrew from the line-up. Their two drivers were unable to find the required funds to take part. At Cram Competition, the Italian Stefano Coletti replaces Adrian Zaugg in the no. 17 Formula Renault 2.0. European Karting champion in 2004, Coletti is also competing in Formula BMW USA this year.

The drivers followed their "big brothers" from the World Series Formula Renault 3.5 onto the circuit. Just as had been the case during collective testing here in March this year, Chris Van der Drift (JD Motorsport) was the quickest, regularly improving upon his best time throughout the session. In the final minute of the morning session, the New Zealander set a new record with a time of 1'59''860, a huge improvement on the 2'01''087 he clocked here in March.

Despite being quickest in the first two sectors, Carlo Van Dam (SG Formula) had to content himself with the second best time, 127/1000ths adrift of the leader. After two disappointing meetings in Istanbul and Misano, Frederico Muggia (BVM Minardi) came back strongly with the third best time.

Jean-Karl Vernay (SG Formula) also produced a fine performance to take the 5th best time, just behind Filipe Albuquerque (Motopark Academy) in fourth.

As the cars took their places on the pre-grid for the second session, heavy rain began to fall on the Nurburgring track. Walter Grubmuller (Team Jenzer) fell victim to a nasty crash on his very first lap. The session was red-flagged for a long period, but the Austrian was okay and will be able to continue for the rest of the weekend.

Filipe Albuquerque was very relaxed and seemed to have taken to the very tricky conditions like a fish to water. The Portuguese driver posted the afternoon's best time with almost 9/10ths to spare over Atte Mustonen (Koiranen Bros). Behind Van der Drift in third, Henkie Waldshmidt (Prema Power Team) produced the performance of the session.

Despite finishing twelfth and sixth respectively in the two sessions, Eurocup leader Dani Clos did not appear overly concerned: "We tried out a lot of things on the car, which is good, because we went through the full array of conditions today. Tomorrow is another day and I know that we'll have a good car."

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About this article
Series Formula Renault
Drivers Adrian Zaugg , Walter Grubmuller , Stefano Coletti , Filipe Albuquerque , Atte Mustonen , Carlo Va , Dani Clos , Jean-Karl Vernay