Pilet rides out the storm With the action raging on the track and off it, France's Pilet (Graff Racing) claimed victory on Saturday ahead of his countryman Moreau (SG Formula), with Fleming (Jenzer Motorsport) completing the podium.
Pilet rides out the storm
With the action raging on the track and off it, France's Pilet (Graff Racing) claimed victory on Saturday ahead of his countryman Moreau (SG Formula), with Fleming (Jenzer Motorsport) completing the podium. The temperature was raised in the paddock later, after three drivers were disqualified and a 20 second penalty given to no fewer than 19 others!
It would seem as though the time difference between most European countries and Britain was overlooked on Saturday morning, with the teams seemingly running to different schedules for the pre-grid assembly. But the latecomers were to learn the hard way, as the stewards decided after a meeting to give them all a 20'' penalty.
The shake-up in the results of the first FR 2000 race of the weekend came after an equally exciting contest on the track. The action was non-stop, as poleman Scott Speed saw his lead snatched from him by Moreau and Fleming, who quickly piled the pressure on the championship leader. Lap two saw Fleming move into the lead ahead of Moreau and Pilet, with Speed relegated to seventh position and battling it out with championship rival Pagenaud, who started in 13th. The Frenchman came into contact with another car and lost part of his front wing, but nevertheless went on to finish the race among the leaders.
The wet Donington track brought plenty of action from some of the leading lights in the series, with Meijer and Kochem forced to abandon and Strous given a drive through penalty, then finally black flagged when he failed to come in. At the front, Moreau and Pilet were bearing down on Fleming, who cracked and ran wide. This gave Pilet, a specialist in the wet, the chance to move past Moreau, while further back the fight for fifth continued between Pagenaud and Speed. The Frenchman finally got the better of the Motopark Academy driver, and managed in the final laps to shake off Aleshin, who ran an excellent race. Speed, meanwhile, held off a strong challenge from Conway (Fortec Motorsport).
After a multitude of spins and detours onto the grass and into the gravel, 17 drivers from the 26 starters crossed the line to finish.
At the chequered flag it was Pilet ahead of Moreau and Fleming. Fourth across the line Pagenaud was one of 19 drivers given a 20 second penalty, dropping him to fifth behind Speed.
<pre> Race Classification 1) Pilet 26'37''586 2) Moreau à 02''080 3) Fleming 05''119 4) Speed 05''696 5) Pagenaud 21''446 6) Di Resta 25''125 7) Conway 25''709 8) Jakes 27''743 9) Ammermuller 29''508 10) Kofler 31''672