Eurocup 2000/Alfa Challenge Hockenheimring preview

The fourth LG Super Racing Weekend of the 2004 season will take place in Germany, at the Hockenheimring Baden-Wurttemberg. This will be the first time that the famous circuit, which hosts the German Formula One Grand Prix every year, will welcome...

The fourth LG Super Racing Weekend of the 2004 season will take place in Germany, at the Hockenheimring Baden-Wurttemberg. This will be the first time that the famous circuit, which hosts the German Formula One Grand Prix every year, will welcome the multi-platform series, and it will mark the first of two German rounds in the 2004 calendar, with a return visit to Oschersleben on September 19th.

There has been a circuit in the German town of Hockenheim since 1932. It has seen a number of changes over the years, with the Motodrom stadium being built in 1966. The first Formula One race took place at the circuit in August 1970. In January 2002, work began on reconstruction and modernisation measures, reducing the length of the circuit to 4.574 km. The circuit no longer has the long power sections through the forests, but retains the famous slow and technical stadium section, to the delight of the spectators.

The Formula Renault V6 Eurocup will not be racing in Hockenheim, as the young drivers will be making their annual trip to the Monaco Formula One Grand Prix, where they will race as part of the support programme. However, the Formula Renault 2000 Eurocup cars and drivers will be present, with two races on the Saturday, while the fourth event of the European Alfa Challenge will also take place at Hockenheim.


German driver Frank Diefenbacher is one of a growing group of up-and-coming young drivers in the FIA European Touring Car Championship. Aged 22, from Pforzheim, he has been driving for SEAT Sport since last year. In 2003, he claimed SEAT's first podium at the German circuit of Oschersleben. In Magny-Cours last week, he set his best-ever qualifying time, starting from third on the grid.

"Hockenheim is very much my local circuit -- it's only about half an hour away from where I live and I know it well. The only problem area is the long back straight down to the hairpin, but the section around the motordrome should really suit the Toledo. If you look at the team's overall performance, we've been to three very different circuits and had very good results in qualifying and warm-up, but some incredible bad luck during the races. I think it's just a matter of time now before we're regularly scoring podium finishes."

Circuit length : 4574 m
Location : 15 km south of Heidelberg
Directions : From Frankfurt, take the A5 Motorway southbound for Mannheim/Karlsruhe; take the Hockenheim exit. The track is east of the town.

As in 2003, the Eurocup FR V6 teams and drivers will enjoy a short interlude on the French Riviera. Sharp, Mondini and co will face each other on May 23rd, on the challenging Monaco city circuit, as an opening race for the Formula One Grand Prix. Therefore, the Eurocup FR V6 teams will not be at Hockenheim. The V6 paddock will be quickly packed up after the Monaco round to head for Brno in the Czech Republic, for the fifth round of the LG Super Racing Weekend

Two pole positions, two wins : French motor sport showed itself to its advantage on the Nevers Magny-Cours circuit. Clairay led throughout the first race, and took the chequered flag. After his success in the French Championship, the SG Formula driver is on fine form at the moment. Pagenaud (Graff Racing) did likewise, by setting pole position for the second race, winning the race and setting the fastest laps during both races. It was an excellent race for the Graff Racing driver, after his mishaps in Monza (broken suspension in qualifying) and his broken engine in Valencia during the second race, while he was looking certain of a podium. Pagenaud is turning out to be one of the most serious claimants for the title.

Renault Sport Motopark Academy, Jenzer Motorsport, Kochem, Ammermuller : Germany is expected a lot from this meeting. As well as the many German representatives, much is also awaited from the American drivers who are bearing the colours of Jenzer and Motopark. It is certain that the battle will be intense, especially with Speed and Kochem at the top of the classification. Fascinating races are guaranteed for the Hockenheimring.

The French team SG Formula, whose drivers include Moreau and Clairay, will not be making the trip to the German circuit. As Moreau is one of the leading title contenders, this is not good news for the French driver; however, with nine rounds remaining after the Hockenheim event, they should be able to recover the lost ground.


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About this article
Series Formula Renault , Road racing
Drivers Frank Diefenbacher
Teams Jenzer Motorsport