22 May ALEX PERONI TAKES HIS FIRST VICTORY IN THE FORMULA RENAULT EUROCUP
Alex Peroni brought R-ace GP’s 2017 invincibility to an end. After obtaining his first pole position Sunday morning, the Australian scored his maiden victory in the Formula Renault Eurocup on the streets of Pau ahead of Sacha Fenestraz and Robert Shwartzman, who now leads in the general classification
The pole and track record for Peroni
Under bright blue skies, Alex Peroni dominated the first qualifying group with a time of 1:12.842. In the other group, briefly interrupted when Daniel Ticktum (Arden Motorsport) went off, Sacha Fenestraz was quickest in 1:12.901, but was unable to beat the Australian’s time set in the previous session, securing Peroni’s first pole of season.
The Russian Alexey Korneev came through with a time of 1.13.787 putting him P18 on the grid, shortly followed by Najiy Razak in P23 and Frank Bird in P25 respectively.
At the start, Sacha Fenestraz pulled even with Alex Peroni. The Australian held his ground to maintain the lead ahead of the Frenchman, Robert Shwartzman, Will Palmer and Max Fewtrell at the end of the opening lap that claimed Presley Martono (Mark Burdett Motorsport) and Rodrigo Pflucker (AVF by Adrián Vallés).
Alex Peroni and Sacha Fenestraz swapped fastest race lap, but the French driver couldn’t find an opening and even saw Robert Shwartzman close ground. Korneev was on a charge and managed to move up 5 places to P14. Frank Bird was putting in a strong performance battling with Renault backed Luis Leeds and Zane Goddard, who like Frank, have graduated to Eurocup from the British F4 Championship.
Despite the traffic and the return of his pursuer, Alex Peroni held his ground to take the win ahead of Sacha Fenestraz and Robert Shwartzman. Alex became the first Australian driver to win a Eurocup race since Daniel Ricciardo. Korneev held on to P14 with Frank Bird in P17, followed by Razak in P19. #TeamFortec showed impressive driving skills to precisely manoeuvre their 2.0 engines around the treacherous circuit of Pau, all finishing in the top 20.
Alex Peroni (Fortec Motorsports): “It is a very physical circuit and Sacha pushed me to the limit. I chose the centre of the track for the start, but I locked up the wheels at turn one. Sacha got alongside me and it was a drag race for the lead before the yellow line ahead of Pont Oscar. It was tight, but I managed to keep the lead. I then had to maintain the pace to win the race. It is a special feeling. We know now that we can win. This will give us additional confidence heading to Monaco next week.”
Provisional General Classification
|1. Robert Shwartzman (R-ace GP) 105
2. Will Palmer (R-ace GP) 104
3. Sacha Fenestraz (Josef Kaufmann Racing) 72
4. Alex Peroni (Fortec Motorsports) 51
5. Max Defourny (R-ace GP) 51