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Eurocup Mégane Trophy

Saturday’s poleman and race winner Mirko Bortolotti (Oregon Team) repeated the feat in Sunday’s Eurocup Megane Trophy race, leading his team-mates Kevin Gilardoni and Kelvin Snoeks home in the rain to leave Motorland Aragon firmly in charge in the championship standings.

Mirko Bortolotti picked up where he left off on Saturday, recording a qualifying time that proved too fast for the rest of the field and signing his second Eurocup Megane Trophy pole in what were very tricky conditions. Taking second and third on the grid behind the Italian were stable-mates Kevin Gilardoni and Kelvin Snoeks, as Oregon Team scored another qualifying hat-trick.

The weather had not improved by the time the race got under way, with the front three retaining their positions despite an eventful start. To their rear Jeroen Schothorst (McGregor by Equipe Verschuur) and Jean-Charles Miginiac (Team Lompech Sport) both made mistakes on lap one, with Mike Verschuur (McGregor by Equipe Verschuur) soon doing likewise.

While Mirko Bortolotti and Kevin Gilardoni made their escape at the head of the race, Steven Palette (Team Lompech Sport) was forced to retire on lap five. The mandatory refuelling stops began two laps later, with Vladimir Lunkin (Oregon Team) the first to pit. The leading duo both came in on lap ten and exited the pit lane still in the lead thanks to the sizeable gap they had built up in the first few laps.

Maintaining his lead, Mirko Bortolotti withstood one last assault from Kevin Gilardoni to take the flag ahead of his team-mate. Erik Janis’ (Gravity Charouz) late fuel stop allowed Kelvin Snoeks to complete a one-two-three for Oregon Team, with the Czech eventually finishing fifth behind Max Braams (Las Moras by Equipe Verschuur) and Mike Verschuur taking sixth ahead of Vladimir Lunkin. Eighth in the race overall, Toni Forne (Gravity Charouz) was the leading gentleman driver ahead of Margot Laffite (Oregon Team) and Oliver Freymuth (AKF Motorsport).

What they said:

Mirko Bortolotti: “It’s a fantastic result and I’m thrilled. The team and I couldn’t have got off to a better start, especially with today’s one-two-three. Kevin and Kelvin have done a great job. The conditions were far from ideal but we had a good strategy. We need to be consistent now and not make mistakes in the next few races.”

Kevin Gilardoni: “Races are always a tough proposition in these conditions. I got off to a good start and had a tussle with Mirko at turn one, though it was impossible to fight it out with him after that. I’m pleased with the result. It’s a good start to a long season and I can’t wait to get to Spa.”

Official Renault Sport Press Release.

Posted: 28 April 2013
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