Ricardo Zonta and Franck Montagny capitalise victories in Magny-Cours.
Zonta stretches the advantage from the second from 6 to 26 points; Montagny and Leinders shares second place.
Local star Montagny shines in the second race in a thrilling end battling against Ricardo Zonta.
Magny-Cours, 31 August 2002 - Ricardo Zonta and Franck Montagny were the winners in the fifth round of the Telefonica World Series by Nissan races hold in the Nevers Magny-Cours circuit (France). The Brazilian driver leaded the first race from the beginning to the end ahead of Bas Leinders and Montagny. In the second race, the compulsory pit stop was decisive: local Montagny took benefit of a fastest pit stop and put in a valiant effort to get his third victory of the season. Zonta stretches the advantage from Leinders and Montagny to 26 points.
In the first of two races, Ricardo Zonta (Gabord Competicion) made a dominant performance in Nevers Magny-Cours circuit and steadily pulled away to score his fifth win of the season (his last victory was in Madrid). The Brazilian driver dominated the whole race after an excellent start. The Belgium Bas Leinders (KTR) finished the second less than a second from Zonta, although his chances of outpaced the Brazilian were very little. Franck Montagny (Racing Engineering) finished third and his teammate Justin Wilson shadowed the French through the race. Antonio Garcia (Adrian Campos Motorsport) ended fifth crowning several weeks of flat-out work by the team.
In the second race, Zonta was expected to do another dominant performance at Magny-Cours and he didn't disappoint. But the Montagny performance was better. Both made a strategy of a later pit stop: the Brazilian entered first the pitwards followed by the French, but the Racing Engineering mechanics made a perfect pit stop and allowed him to enter first the track. Although Zonta tried to recover the first place, Montagny reached it in blinding last laps. Antonio Garcia watched the battle from the third place and reached the rostrum. Bad luck ruined Bas Leinders's race: Justin Wilson flew off the road in first lap and obliged the Belgium to make a trip into the gravel. The British driver took benefit of a good pit stop, but Leinders was not able to finish up to 7th. Andre Couto, the Macao driver, was sanctioned with 20 second because he didn't the pit stop in the scheduled number of laps, so he backed from 8th place to 11th.
The next meeting will take place at Barcelona (Spain) on 29 September.
"It has been a weekend very positive. In second race, after changing the tyres in the pit stop I saw Montagny besides me when I was going to come back to the track. Y had to break and avoid a collision. The end has been thrilling and this is very important for the spectators and for the championship"
"Thanks to my team, that made a perfect pit stop, I could reach the victory in the second race"
"Finally, this is the benefit of a good job, My car has improved a lot this summer because we tested it two sessions in Valencia. This improvement may arrive a bit late but we want to recover the lost time"
"Justin Wilson throw me to the gravel, but this is just a circumstance of the race. I came back to the road but I had lost all my chances of victory, because my teammate blocked me during the last laps of the race. Nevertheless, the championship is not lost yet"
Circuit de Nevers Magny-Cours
Length: 4.250 m
Race 1 World Series (17 laps)
1. Ricardo Zonta (BRA) Gabord Competicion 25:13.198
2. Bas Leinders (BEL) KTR 25:13.927 7 0.729
3. Franck Montagny (FRA) Racing Engineering 25:19.460 / 6.262
4. Justin Wilson (GBR) Racing Engineering 25:20.182 / 6.984
5. Antonio Garcia (SPA) Adrian Campos Motors. 25:20,994 / 7.796
6. Jonathan Cochet (FRA) 7UP GD Racing 25:35.917 / 22.719
Best lap: a Ricardo Zonta 1:28.022 at 173,820 km /h
Race 2 World Series (25 laps)
1. Franck Montagny (FRA) Racing Engineering 37:26.367
2. Ricardo Zonta (BRA) Gabord Competicion 37:26.706 / 0.339
3. Antonio Garcia (ESP) Adrian Campos Motors. 37:34.867 / 8.500
4. Tuka Rocha (BRA) Gabord Competicion 37:40.506 / 14.139
5. Justin Wilson (GBR) Racing Engineering 37:41.385 / 15.018
6. Ander Vilariño (ESP) Epsilon by Graff 37:47.101 / 20.734
Best lap: Ricardo Zonta 1:27.952 a 173,959 km/h
Championship standings after Magny-Cours (provisional): 1. R. Zonta, 163 p oints; 2. F. Montagny, 137; 3. B. Leinders, 137; 4. J. Wilson, 64; 5. J.C. Ravier, 41; 6. A. Couto, 35; 7. A. Garcia, 35.
Belicchi wins, Bobbi is sanctioned and Porteiro remains leader in Formula Nissan 2000
The runaway Championship leader Santiago Porteiro (Repsol Meycom) remains the leader after the two races in the Nevers Magny-Cours circuit. The Championship challenger Matteo Bobbi (Vergani Racing) won today the second race but was sanctioned with 10 seconds due to an incident with Porteiro, so the real winner was Andrea Belicchi (BCN Competicion), his first victory of the season. The Spanish driver finished second and Bobbi, third.
The thrilling race was determined by the incident that took place on the 8th of 16 laps: Bobbi tried to outpace Porteiro to reach the first place, both cars touch in the thick of the battle and Porteiro's car spun. As a result of this, Bobbi took the race leadership but was punished by the race director. The winner of the first race, Borja Garcia (Venturini Racing), went to pitwards after first lap due to a little collision with Porteiro.
Standings: 1. S. Porteiro, 129 points; 2. M. Bobbi, 107; 3. J.M. Perez-Aicart, 94; 4. A. Belicchi , 91; 5. B. Garcia, 84; 6. C. Miguez, 72.
Only the top 10 drivers are in the points. The distribution is as follows: 1st. 20 points; 2nd. 15 points; 3rd. 12 points. 4th. 10 points. 5th. 8 points. 6th.6 points. 7th. 4 points. 8th. 3 points. 9th. 2 points. 10th. 1 point. Fast lap: 2 points for each race.