EFREN: Eurocup FRen V6 Oschersleben preview

THE RENAULT PART ONLY What a difference a race makes ! The first race back after the long summer break, Anderstorp, had a significant effect on the Championship classifications in all three major series running as part of the LG Super Racing ...


What a difference a race makes ! The first race back after the long summer break, Anderstorp, had a significant effect on the Championship classifications in all three major series running as part of the LG Super Racing Weekend series.

In the Eurocup Formula Renault V6, Jose Maria Lopez of Argentina and France's Tristan Gommendy won the Grand Race and Super Sprint respectively in Anderstorp, with Gommendy taking the lead of the provisional classification, two points ahead of Switzerland's Neel Jani and eight ahead of Lopez.

The Oschersleben track is relatively short, tight and twisting, and quite technical. The stadium layout means that it is very good for spectators. However, for the drivers, it can be rather tiring, as there are no long straights, and many corners, giving them no time to relax.

The LG Super Racing Weekend in Oschersleben will also include the Renault Sport Speed Trophy, a single race for the cars from the Renault Sport Clio Trophy and Renault Sport Clio Elf International Cup, with two separate classifications. There will also be two races of the DMSB Formula Renault 2000 Cup.


Jorg Muller is 33 years old, and started his career in single-seaters, winning the Formula 3000 Championship in 1996 and testing for Arrows in Formula One the year after. He moved to Sportscars in 1998, while remaining a Formula One test driver for Sauber, and claimed a number of podium finishes in the FIA GT Championship for Porsche. 1999 brought wins at Sebring for BMW, and he finished 5th overall in the ALMS in 2000 for BMW, winning at Silverstone and Charlotte. In 2001 he moved to the GT category, to drive a BMW M3, remaining with the team in 2002, in the FIA European Touring Car Championship. This marked his return to touring cars for the first time since 1995, when he drove in the German Super Touring Cup. Last year he finished second in the Drivers' classification; with four wins, including the second ETCC race in Oschersleben; he now arrives back at the track as the new Championship leader.

"This is not a high-speed circuit. The top speeds of the ETCC cars are around 200 kmh. Oschersleben has a lot of corners, and some of them are very long. As a result, you are always at the limit and it's very easy to make slight mistakes. As a matter of fact everyone makes mistakes and it's almost impossible to complete a perfect lap. As the straights are not very long, it's impossible to overtake by slipstreaming or outbraking. It is better to concentrate on the guy in front of you and wait for his mistake. One of Oschersleben's most spectacular features is that all the turns may be negotiated following different lines. Therefore it is not difficult to see groups of two or three cars cornering side by side. It's a quite good track for the spectators, as from the hill in the infield is possible to see almost three quarters of the circuit."

The latter part of the season has been busy for the teams and drivers taking part in the Formula Renault V6 Eurocup. Just a week after running at Spa-Francorchamps, when Andrea Bellichi and Jose Maria Lopez were victorious, they were in action again at the Swedish track of Anderstorp. In the bright sunshine, Lopez continued his run of good results by winning the Grand Race, while France's Tristan Gommendy overtook the Argentinean at the start of the Super Sprint to claim the win and the provisional Championship lead. Now they all head for Oschersleben, for two more challenging races around the tight, technical, modern circuit. Last year, in the Formula Renault 2000 Eurocup, Neel Jani, who lost the Championship lead in Sweden, finished second in Oschersleben, between eventual champion Eric Salignon and Jani's Jenzer Motorsport team-mate Bruno Spengler. The Championship is currently extremely close, with Gommendy only two points ahead of Lopez, who is himself just six points ahead of Jani. With 30 points on offer for a win, plus bonus points for fastest lap and pole position, the season is far from over yet.


Renault Sport Renault Sport Technologies confirmed last weekend that the Formula Renault V6 Eurocup will continue in 2004 and 2005, with the partnership between the series and the LG Super Racing Weekend set to be renewed for 2004. Jean Paul Mari, Vice President of Motorsport and Communications, explained. "I can confirm that the Eurocup FR V6 will go ahead as planned in 2004 and 2005. The FR V6 will be benefiting from a number of technical developments, while keeping control of the costs, which remains one of our main priorities. Finally, the 2004 FR V6 will be held as part of the LG Super Racing Weekend series; the partnership agreement with Eurosport is currently being finalised."


Renault Sport The overall classification of the FR V6 remains provisional, awaiting the results of the tribunal concerning the ARTA-Signature cars and the first Spa round of the Eurocup on July 25th. The cars originally had their qualifying times removed, due to a non-compliance with the regulations concerning the front deflectors. The team appealed the decision, which suspended the situation, allowing the cars to start from their original qualifying positions. Gommendy proceeded to win the race. The appeal was held in Belgium on Wednesday September 10th, and the results are expected within two weeks. Until then, Gommendy and Matsuura retain their points, with Gommendy leading the championship, but the classification remaining provisional until further notice.


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About this article
Series Formula Renault
Drivers Jorg Muller , Bruno Spengler , Eric Salignon , Neel Jani , Tristan Gommendy , Jose Maria Lopez
Teams Sauber