UK: Series Silverstone race one report

BUZAID CONVERTS POLE TO WIN AT SILVERSTONE Adriano Buzaid (Oxford) won round 11 of the 2008 Formula Renault UK with Michelin Championship with a lights-to-flag victory at Silverstone on Sunday, 8th June. Racing on the full Grand Prix circuit...

BUZAID CONVERTS POLE TO WIN AT SILVERSTONE

Adriano Buzaid (Oxford) won round 11 of the 2008 Formula Renault UK with Michelin Championship with a lights-to-flag victory at Silverstone on Sunday, 8th June. Racing on the full Grand Prix circuit in support of World Series by Renault, the Brazilian led home CR Scuderia Formula Renault's Adam Christodoulou (Lichfield) and his Fortec Motorsport team-mate James Calado (Cropthorne) for his second win of the season.

At the highest profile event of the Formula Renault UK season, Buzaid came under pressure off the start line from Calado but held the lead as he squeezed over to the pit wall. Calado dropped to fourth with Adam Christodoulou coming up to second from third on the grid. Manor Competition's Alexander Sims (Peterborough) gained two places to third, while Fortec's Riki Christodoulou (Sutton Coldfield) lost one place to lie fifth.

A spin for Manor's Henry Surtees (Lingfield) at the exit of Chapel caused several drivers to take swift evasive action. Apotex Scorpio Motorsport's Kieren Clark (Royston) had to pit for a new front wing after clipping the back of CR Scuderia's Sten Pentus (Bardon) while trying to avoid the spinning Surtees.

At the start of lap two, CR Scuderia's Scott Jenkins (Bristol) dived to the inside of Apotex Scorpio Motorsport's Will Bratt (Banbury), making a one-off return to the series in which he finished third overall last season. However, a spin for the 16-year-old Jenkins later in the lap undid his good work to leave him 20th.

Eurotek Motorsport's Jordan Oakes (Hopton) and Worswick Engineering's Rossi (Blackburn) also passed Bratt to lie 11th an 12th. The closest battle on track was for sixth with Fortec's Oli Webb (Knutsford) leading Manor's Kris Loane (Kesh) and Alpine Motorsport's Dean Stoneman (Southampton), with Webb losing out on lap five after a spin at Priory.

At the head of the field, Buzaid set the fastest lap to that point on lap four to extend his lead to more than two seconds over Adam Christodoulou. Having earlier fallen back, Calado was now reeling in Sims with Riki Christodoulou trying to make it a three-way tussle for the final podium spot.

On lap eight, Calado passed Sims for third place on the run onto Hangar Straight and immediately closed the gap on second placed Adam Christodoulou. However, the following lap saw Calado run slowest among the top six and he soon came under pressure from team-mate Riki Christodoulou after he drafted past Sims on Hangar Straight. Sims fought back at Club chicane but Christodoulou kept a tight line to hold fourth place.

Lap 12 saw a great out-braking manoeuvre by Apotex Scorpio's Josh Scott (Loughborough), the Australian diving to the inside of Stoneman to take seventh place on the left-hander at Club. Among the leaders, Adam Christodoulou gained slightly on Buzaid on successive laps but the Brazilian's lead was too large to bridge the gap. Buzaid also set the NGK fastest lap of the race at 1min 46.070s, an average speed of 108.40mph around the 3.194-mile circuit.

With two laps to go, Jenkins passed Oakes at Stowe for 11th place. On the penultimate lap, Jenkins gained two more places as CR Scuderia's Ryuji Yamamoto (Milton Keynes) and Stoneman had a slight touch as the Japanese tried to overtake but lost control and clipped the front of Stoneman's car. Both lost ground, also allowing Rossi up to eighth place having started from 18th on the grid.

Buzaid began the final lap with a lead of more than 2.5s and although Adam Christodoulou, Calado and Riki Christodoulou were closer to each other than the previous lap, the positions remained unchanged to the chequered flag to give Buzaid maximum points. Adam Christodoulou extends his championship lead over cousin Riki to 26 points.

Commenting on the race, Adriano Buzaid said: "I'm very pleased to win again this season and to do it at Silverstone on the Grand Prix circuit is great. My start was not the best but once we got into the race I was able to keep an eye on my pace and keep the gap back to Adam. Hopefully I can get the same result this afternoon."

Second-placed Adam Christodoulou said: "Adriano got the jump early on and made a bit of a break. Although I was still feeling good in the second half of the race there was too much ground to make up and I couldn't quite get it back. It felt like a really long race though, especially with the sun coming out at the end to make it even hotter in the cockpit."

Third-placed James Calado, the leading Graduate Cup finisher, said: "I was a bit disappointed with Adriano at the start because he squeezed me a bit too much in my opinion. After that I thought I came back well to get past Alexander but even though I've finished third I think it could have been much better."

-credit: renaultsport.co.uk

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Series Formula Renault
Drivers Sten Pentus , Henry Surtees , Alexander Sims , Will Bratt , Adriano Buzaid , Riki Christodoulou , Adam Christodoulou , Dean Stoneman , James Calado