Clean sweep for Albuquerque After clinching his second win of the weekend in Nurburgring, Filipe Albuqerque (Motopark Academy) moved back into the Eurocup Formula Renault 2.0 title race. A second runner-up spot for Laurent Groppi (Graff ...
Clean sweep for Albuquerque
After clinching his second win of the weekend in Nurburgring, Filipe Albuqerque (Motopark Academy) moved back into the Eurocup Formula Renault 2.0 title race. A second runner-up spot for Laurent Groppi (Graff Racing) showed the quality of the Eurocup's leading part-time competitor. Another third place for Chris Van der Drift (JD Motorsport) means that the New Zealander now leads the championship on his own.
While Filipe Albuquerque repeated yesterday's perfect start, Laurent Groppi didn't seem to get away very well. But the Frenchman held onto second position at the first corner, ahead of Kasper Andersen. The main field remained tightly bunched at the end of lap one. Behind the first three, the chasing pack consisted of Chris Van der Drift, Dani Clos (Jenzer Motorsport), Jean-Karl Vernay (SG Formula), Brendon Hartley (Motopark Academy), Carlo Van Dam (SG Formula) and John Edwards (Motopark Academy).
The scrap between the SG Formula and Motopark Academy drivers was really something. Hartley found a way past Vernay, moving up into 6th place at the start of the lap three.
Chris Van der Drift then managed to overtake his team-mate Kasper Andersen on the next lap. The New Zealander thus had Laurent Groppi in his sights. Meanwhile, Albuquerque had established a small lead of just under a second.
The sixth lap proved to be disastrous for two French drivers, Ulric Amado (Hexis Racing) and Tom Dillmann (SG Formula). Dillmann was nonetheless able to get away again and took some consolation by successfully clinching the fastest race lap. Henkie Waldshmidt (Prema Power Team) lost his top 10 spot at the hands of Xavier Maasen (JD Motorsport), one of the most on-form drivers in the main field.
Kasper Andersen then lost another place on lap 9, as Dani Clos moved past him. Meanwhile, in the main field, there was an epic struggle for 21st place (!) between Stefano Coletti (Cram Competition), Edoardo Mortara (Prema Power Team) and Pablo Sanchez (BVM Minardi).
With three laps left, Laurent Groppi remained within striking distance of Filipe Albuquerque, but he was unable to put any serious pressure on the leader. A bit further back of the two leaders, Van der Drift had to keep an eye on the fast-improving Dani Clos in his rear view mirrors. But as with the top two, places three and four remained unchanged to the end of the race.
On the race's penultimate lap, Xavier Maasen gained another place, moving ahead of John Edwards.
Filipe Albuquerque: "It's been a perfect weekend. I couldn't have asked for any more! These two wins put me right back in the championship. There are still six courses left and a lot can happen."
Laurent Groppi: "I'm pleased to have been able to show my potential in front of the World Series teams, which is important for 2007. The car was better than yesterday and I was able to keep up with Filipe from start to finish."
Chris Van der Drift: "My goal was to finish ahead of Dani Clos so I could take the championship lead. I have to keep going like that - finish races, score points and win!"