EU Megane: Series Magny-Cours race 1 report

A successful day for Nick Catsburg Unstoppable on slicks despite a wet start to the race, TDS Racing's Nick Catsburg has won his second race of the season. He also takes control of the Championship in Eurocup Megane Trophy. The TDS Racing team...

A successful day for Nick Catsburg

Unstoppable on slicks despite a wet start to the race, TDS Racing's Nick Catsburg has won his second race of the season. He also takes control of the Championship in Eurocup Megane Trophy. The TDS Racing team also scored a one-two thanks to teammate Pierre Thiriet. Equipe Verscuur's Wim Beelen was the winner of the Gentlement Drivers category.

Before the rains came, Nick Catsburg set the fastest lap in qualifying, to claim his fourth pole of the season. The Netherlander lined up on the Eurocup Megane Trophy start grid ahead of Boutsen Energy Racing's Dimitri Enjalbert, who was back in business, and McGregor by Equipe Verschuur's Bas Schothorst.

When the lights changed for the start of the fifth Eurocup Megane Trophy race of the season, the track was still damp, but the leading six drivers opted for slick, whereas the rest of the field had chosen wet weather tyres. The track was still slippery and Dimitri Enjalbert got caught out on the parade lap. He was forced to start from the back of the grid, but the Frenchman was handed a black flag as the stewards had help to push him out of the gravel trap.

Nick Catsburg made the best start, and it was McGregor by Equipe Verschuur's Hoevert Vos on wet tyres who snatched second place, ahead of Stefano Comini, also sporting wets. The playing field was soon level between the slick and the wets. Nick Catsburg was able to build up a lead over Oregon Team's Stefan Comini, second. But the advantage of the wet tyres would soon be lost. They were useless against a comeback from Schothorst, Boutsen Energy Racing's Fabien Thuner and Pierre Thiriet.

After five laps, Catsburg had the best part of 20 seconds lead over Schothorst, second. Stefano Comini was also forced to contend with the return of Thuner and Thiriet. The two drivers wasted no time in overtaking the leader of the Eurocup Megane Trophy. Thuner and Thiriet commenced their fight for third place until the mandatory pitstop. Catsburg stopped very early on, but his pursuers showed their patience. Bas Schothorst spent a few laps in the lead, but sooner or later he too would have to pit.

At the end of mandatory pit stops, Nick Catsburg led the way with an 18 second lead over Pierre Thiriet. The Frenchman had been piling on the pressure since refuelling. Bas Schothorst was third, while Stefano Comini retired and lost out on important championship points. Only Bas Schothorst refused to lay down his arms, fighting Pierre Thiriet for second place right to the very finish. The Frenchman was nevertheless able to hold him off until the chequered flag.

Nick Catsburg claimed his second win of the season and at the same time took top spot in the Championship. The TDS Racing team also scored a one-two thanks to teammate Pierre Thiriet, While Bas Schothorst completed the podium line-up, with Wim Beelend winner of the Gentlement Drivers.

Quote, unquote:

Nick Catsburg : "Above all we'd like to dedicate this double to our teammate, Jean-Philippe Madonia, who has been ill since yesterday and can't make it today. The race was very perfect. Once I saw Dimitri in the gravel, I knew I was in luck. Then my luck got even better when Comini crashed out. "

Pierre Thiriet : "We decided to put on slicks for the start, and it was the right decision. Then the team was great during the pit stop. The end of the race wasn't easy, but overall the race went well and the result is very important for the championship."

Bas Schothorst : "We were really quick from the start of the weekend, I was hoping to do a little better. Unfortunately, the conditions were very changeable this afternoon, which is the worst. But that just made for a more competitive race!"

-source: wsr

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About this article
Series Formula Renault
Drivers Dimitri Enjalbert , Hoevert Vos , Wim Beelen , Philippe Ma , Pierre Thiriet , Stefano Comini
Teams TDS Racing