Enjalbert leads clean sweep for Tech 1 By taking a clean sweep of the podium places for race one of the Megane Trophy, the Tech 1 Racing team has confirmed it is well in control of the Eurocup. Dimitri Enjalbert takes his first win of the season...
Enjalbert leads clean sweep for Tech 1
By taking a clean sweep of the podium places for race one of the Megane Trophy, the Tech 1 Racing team has confirmed it is well in control of the Eurocup. Dimitri Enjalbert takes his first win of the season ahead of Matthieu Lahaye and Pedro Petiz.
The intrigue got underway early on as Michael Rossi (Racing for Belgium) remained immobile on the grid, unable to start the formation lap. The young French driver was able to make the start in the end, but only from the pitlane.
Dimitri Enjalbert got off to the best start from pole position. Starting from right behind his teammate on the grid, Matthieu Lahaye slotted smoothly into his slipstream to go into the opening bend in second position. Further, Ralph Meichtry managed to hold onto third but not without some difficulty. The one to come off worst from the start was Maxime Martin, who completed lap one in fifth position behind Bernhard Ten Brinke. These two were followed by Petiz, Van Dam and Badey.
On lap two, Ralph Meichtry snatched second place away from Lahaye. Michael Rossi and Diego Romanini (Oregon Team) lost a lot of time when they collided. Behind Enjalbert, Meichtry and Lahaye, a thrilling battle was starting to rage in the chasing group. Pedro Petiz moved up into fourth on lap five, while Bernhard Ten Brinke dropped back to sixth behind Maxime Martin. A few lengths further back, the battle for seventh between Carlo van Dam, Ludovic Badey, Fabrice Walfisch and Sebastien Dhouailly was just as spectacular!
With just under half of the race gone, Walfisch and Verschuur became the first drivers to come into the pits to refuel. Meanwhile, Lahaye had spirited second place away from Meichtry. In an effort to regain the upper hand, the Swiss driver then made an unforced error which put him out of touch with the leaders. He went on to make his stop at the start of lap twelve.
Martin and Dhouailly then came into the pits on the following lap. This handed fourth place to Ten Brinke who set off in pursuit of Petiz. But the battle wasn't to last long, as the Portuguese driver made his stop on lap 14. But fortunately, there is never any shortage of battles in the Megane Trophy: while Enjalbert and Lahaye made their stops at the same time, Martin and Meichtry were busy fighting it out for eighth place!
Ten Brinke was the last driver to make his stop on lap 15. Enjalbert then regained the lead ahead of Lahaye, Petiz, Ten Brinke, Meichtry, Martin, Walfisch and Dhouailly. But Ten Brinke was not able to savour his fourth place for long, as he picked up a drive through' for having crossed the white line when exiting the pit lane. On the penultimate lap, Maxime Martin then snatched 4th place away from Meichtry. Despite having to serve his drive through', Ten Brinke still managed to finish ninth behind Walfisch, Dhouailly and Verschuur.
Dimitri Enjalbert: "The race went well for me: I got off to a good start, made it into the first bend in the lead and led from start to finish. I couldn't possibly have imagined that I was going to be able to open up such a lead right from the start of the race. I hope to do just the same tomorrow."
Matthieu Lahaye: "I'm happy to make it onto the podium after a difficult weekend in Zolder. My car wasn't handling brilliantly at the start of the race and Meichtry was able to get past me. But I managed to stay in touch, the car improved and I was able to regain the upper hand."
Pedro Petiz: "It wasn't an easy race, particularly on the opening lap, because I got off to a poor start. But the team was excellent at the pitstop and in the end I'm satisfied to finish on the podium."