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Eurocup Mégane Trophy

Mirko Bortolotti (Oregon Team) recorded his fourth win of the season in the Eurocup Megane Trophy with victory in race one at Moscow Raceway. The championship leader finished ahead of Pieter Schothorst (Las Moras by Equipe Verschuur) and Kelvin Snoeks (Oregon Team) to stretch his advantage at the top of the leaderboard, while Mike Verschuur (McGregor by Equipe Verschuur) had a race to forget.

In the first qualifying session, Mirko Bortolotti recorded the fastest time with a lap of 1:38.212, taking his tally to four pole positions from a possible five this season. The Italian lined up on the grid in front of Mike Verschuur and Pieter Schothorst.

After the lights went out, championship leader Mirko Bortolotti held his lead with real authority, with Mike Verschuur, Pieter Schothorst, Kelvin Snoeks (Oregon Team) and Erik Janis following behind. Further back in the field, Toni Forné (Gravity Charouz) had to retire after a collision, while Max Braams (Las Moras by Equipe Verschuur) fell all the way to last place after making two off-track detours.

From there onwards, the gap between Mirko Bortolotti and the chasing pack remained consistent. Max Braams and Jean-Charles Miginiac (Team Lompech Sport) kicked off the mandatory round of refuelling stops, before colliding with each other only five laps later. Mike Verschuur made his pitstop on lap fourteen, but his hopes of winning the race were dashed when he picked up a puncture.

Mirko Bortolotti refuelled three laps later, which allowed him to retain the race lead after Pieter Schothorst's pitstop. The pair remained in front until the chequered flag. Elsewhere, Erik Janis passed Kelvin Snoeks on the final lap to snatch third place. The Gravity Charouz driver, however, was later handed a 10-second penalty for a collision with his Oregon Team rival. As a result, it was Snoeks who took third place.

Kevin Gilardoni (Oregon Team) finished fourth, followed by Eric Janis, Steven Palette (Team Lompech Sport), Mike Verschuur, Margot Laffite (Oregon Team) and Vladimir Lunkin (Oregon Team). Jeroen Schothorst (McGregor by Equipe Verschuur), meanwhile, finished tenth and was the first of the Gentleman Drivers to cross the line.

What they said

Mirko Bortolotti: "It's been a fantastic day, capped by another victory – this time in Moscow. I've enjoyed my first experience of this circuit, and everything has been perfect. I've felt comfortable since the start. The work we put in yesterday has paid off, and our car and strategy were brilliant. A big thank-you must go to my team for that."

Pieter Schothorst: "I'm pleased to have started with a podium finish. The car is really nice to drive. A lot of things were new to me, and it's a circuit that really puts your driving skills to the test. It's a shame my team-mate got a puncture, as I'd love to have battled alongside him."

Eurocup Mégane Trophy – provisional championship standings: 1. M. Bortolotti 112 pts, 2. M. Verschuur 59, 3. K. Snoeks 56, 4. K. Gilardoni 54, 5. E. Janis 48

Official Renault Sport Press Release.

Posted: 22 June 2013
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