EU Megane: Series Catalunya Friday test notes

Mike Verschuur is back! After a season away from WSR, Mike Verschuur (McGregor by Equipe Verschuur) is back with a vengeance in Eurocup Megane Trophy and is clearly determined to be the first to record a win in New Megane Trophy. The Dutch...

Mike Verschuur is back!

After a season away from WSR, Mike Verschuur (McGregor by Equipe Verschuur) is back with a vengeance in Eurocup Megane Trophy and is clearly determined to be the first to record a win in New Megane Trophy. The Dutch driver finished ahead of Bernhard Ten Brinke (Equipe Verschuur) and Dimitri Enjalbert (Boutsen Energy Racing) in today's test session.

Twenty-two brand new Megane Trophies headed out onto the track for this season's first meeting. As soon as the session was green-flagged, all the drivers immediately went out in this season's major new model. After a few reconnaissance laps, Nick Catsburg (Tech 1 Racing) was the first to top the timing screens, ahead of Jonathan Hirschi (TDS) and Mike Verschuur. But Verschuur was quick to take control of the session, with a time of 1'54''286.

Mike Verschuur, Jonathan Hirschi, Dimitri Enjalbert and Nick Catsburg were clear of the rest of the field, all with four tenths of each other. Fifth-placed Jean-Philippe Madonia (TDS) was defending his Gentlemen Drivers title in fine style, way ahead of his rivals in the category.

First Jonathan Hirschi, and then Bernhard Ten Brinke, one lap later, improved on Verschuur's time. The session had to be suspended twice, following the crashes of Matthieu Cheruy (Tech 1 Racing) and then Hoevert Vos (Verschuur Autosport). When the session restarted, Jonathan Hirschi regained the lead with a time of 1'53''455. But everything changed in the dying moments of the morning session. Fabrice Walfisch (Team Lompech Sport) moved into the lead, but he only stayed there for a few seconds because in his final attempt, Mike Verschuur set the session's best time, with 1'52''837. He finished ahead of Fabrice Walfisch, Jonathan Hirschi, Nick Catsburg and Bernhard Ten Brinke.

The drivers kicked off the afternoon session very determined to better the times set in the first session. Jonathan Hirschi led the way initially, but then it was Dimitri Enjalbert's turn to head up the standings. The skies looked threatening, a storm was brewing-- but Bernhard Ten Brinke managed to clock the afternoon's best performance, just before the heavens opened! His time of 1'52''860 was, however, short of the day's best time, set by Mike Verschuur in the first session.

Mike Verschuur ended this first day at the top of the standings, ahead of Bernhard Ten Brinke and Dimitri Enjalbert. The top 5 was completed by Fabrice Walfisch and Jonathan Hirschi.

Bernhard Ten Brinke: "It was a very good day. I only lapped with used tyres in the morning session. This afternoon, I went out at the start of the session with fresh tyres, because it was obviously going to rain before long. I didn't have a perfect lap, but it was good enough to take the afternoon session's best time. New Megane Trophy is not only a very good-looking car, it's also very powerful. I feel very comfortable driving it. I hope the results will be forthcoming."

Dimitri Enjalbert: "This morning, the car really wasn't great. We couldn't understand why the handling was so uneven, I was taking risks to try and record a good time! Then we realized that the rear shock absorbers were loose. Everything was back to normal in the second session. We really worked on the car before putting on fresh tyres. Unfortunately, the rain came before we had a chance to get onto the track. So, we haven't driven on new tyres as yet. So, we're pretty happy with our performance today. We're ready for qualifying. We'll just have to wait and see what the weather is like tomorrow."

-credit: wsr

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About this article
Series Formula Renault
Drivers Dimitri Enjalbert , Matthieu Cheruy , Bernhard Ten Brinke , Jonathan Hirschi , Philippe Ma