Megane: Monza preview

Heylen eight points shy of title joy To be the first ever winner of the Eurocup Megane Trophy, Jan Heylen (Racing for Belgium) must score eight points in Italy this weekend. Renaud Derlot's (TP Competition) chances of overall victory are slim ...

Heylen eight points shy of title joy

To be the first ever winner of the Eurocup Megane Trophy, Jan Heylen (Racing for Belgium) must score eight points in Italy this weekend. Renaud Derlot's (TP Competition) chances of overall victory are slim but still alive! Winner of the last four races, Ludovic Badey (Pouchelon Racing) looks like he will have his say in duel between the leaders.

Although he has not maintained the dominating form he showed at the start of the season, Jan Heylen is without doubt the boss' of the 2005 Eurocup Megane Trophy. He has won six times and finished in the points on twelve occasions in thirteen races! The Racing for Belgium driver is well placed to win the title this weekend ahead of Renaud Derlot, who has only won once this season.

Heylen is not however the kind of driver to take it easy. Visibly ruffled by Ludovic Badey's superb end of season form, he wants to finish with a win: "I don't race to come second. I want to win races. We will have to keep working hard right to the end."

Like Heylen, Renaud Derlot has finished in the top three on nine occasions. He seems to have an almost impossibly steep mountain to climb in order to close the 27-point gap to Heylen. The TP Competition driver must also hold off a determined challenge for second place from Ludovic Badey.

Winner of the last four races, the French driver's end of season has been nothing short of exceptional. Out of the running for the title, the Pouchelon Racing driver is only twelve points adrift of Derlot: the runner-up spot is well within his reach!

Fourth overall, Nicola Gianniberti (Oregon Team) is the only Italian driver taking part in the discipline. On home soil, the former Karting World Champion will be keen to finish his season with a first win in a Megane. In addition to Pedro Petiz, the Oregon team will also have a third car taking part for Mike Parisy, who previously drove for the Gemo Sport team.

Gianniberti will have his work cut out to defend his overall position: Cesar Campanico (Racing for Belgium) is only one point behind, whilst Jeffrey Van Hooydonk (Thierry Boutsen Racing) is only five adrift!

Several drivers have a chance of making it onto the podium, including Angel Burgueño (Epsilon Euskadi), Renaud Kuppens (Thierry Boutsen Racing), Frederic Gabillon (Team Lompech Sport) and Simon Abadie (Tech 1 Racing). All of these drivers would love to end 2005 on a high note.

Certain of winning the Team title, Racing for Belgium is set to give Japanese driver Ebihara Shigeki a run-out in its third car. The former F3 driver converted to touring car racing two years ago.

Estoril's unlucky hero, Swiss driver Marc Benz (Iris Racing) comes to Monza as leader of the Junior championship. But unlike his rivals, he may well be able to discard a fifth place. His 19-point lead over Pedro Petiz means that he will be able to control proceedings. The final podium place will be very hotly contested with Mathieu Lahaye (Tech 1 Racing), Mike Parisy and Sebastien Dhouailly (Team Lompech Sport) all in the running for third overall.

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Series Formula Renault
Drivers Thierry Boutsen , Jan Heylen , Cesar Campanico , Renaud Derlot , Ludovic Badey , Sebastien Dhouailly , Nicola Gianniberti , Simon Abadie , Renaud Kuppens , Marc Benz , Pedro Petiz , Frédéric Gabillon , Angel Burgueño , Matthieu Lahaye , Mike Parisy