EU Megane: Donington qualifying summary

Lahaye on pole again After starting from the front of the grid at the Nurburgring, Matthieu Lahaye (Tech 1 Racing) has made it onto pole again at Donington Park. By setting the second fastest time overall, the Junior driver will also start from...

Lahaye on pole again

After starting from the front of the grid at the Nurburgring, Matthieu Lahaye (Tech 1 Racing) has made it onto pole again at Donington Park. By setting the second fastest time overall, the Junior driver will also start from pole position in race two. Jaap Van Lagen (Equipe Verschuur) and Jean-Philippe Dayraut (Epsilon Euskadi) will be the ones lining up alongside him.

The start of the session was delayed by a few minutes after Rafael Unzurrunzaga (Blue Jumeirah Team) ran off while returning to the pit lane from the pre-grid area.

With ten of the thirty minutes gone, a dozen or so drivers were out on track. Renaud Kuppens (Thierry Boutsen Racing) was the one who dominated early proceedings with a lap in 1'36''416.

One by one, the favourites to take pole came out on track. This is when the action really got underway as various drivers took it in turns to crank up the pace. Kuppens, who had nevertheless improved on his initial time, was successively beaten by Cesar Campanico (Racing for Belgium), Bernhard Ten Brinke (Equipe Verschuur), Jonathan Hirschi (Hirschi Racing Team), Jaap Van Lagen (Equipe Verschuur), Matthieu Lahaye and Bruce Lorgere-Roux (Tech 1 Racing). The only name needed to complete the list was Jean-Philippe Dayraut (Epsilon Euskadi) and he duly obliged!

With ten minutes to go, Matthieu Lahaye was fastest ahead of Jean-Philippe Dayraut and Jaap Van Lagen. Three minutes later, the Dutchman went fastest for the first time in the session.

But Matthieu Lahaye hit back on his second run, setting two fastest laps and opening up a gap of over 2/10ths back to Van Lagen. This put Jean-Philippe Dayraut back in third, but the French driver will still start from the front row for race two.

James Kirkpatrick (Epsilon Euskadi) put in a fine performance, making it onto row two for both races. Ten Brinke also recorded his best qualifying performances to date with a fifth and a seventh spot.

Of the drivers making their debuts, Franck Mailleux (TDS) and Jonathan Hirschi both did what was required of them by managing to qualify in the top ten for each race.

Things were a little more disappointing for Cesar Campanico, who will only start from ninth and eighth on the grid respectively.

-credit: renault

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About this article
Series Formula Renault
Drivers Thierry Boutsen , Cesar Campanico , Renaud Kuppens , Jean-Philippe Dayraut , Matthieu Lahaye , Bernhard Ten Brinke , Franck Mailleux , Jonathan Hirschi