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Formula Renault 2.0

French drivers claimed the first three places on the grid for the opening Eurocup Formula Renault 2.0 race of the weekend at Motorland Aragon. After posting the fastest time in this morning’s qualifying session, Matthieu Vaxiviere (Tech 1 Racing) will share the front row with Esteban Ocon (ART Junior Team), while Pierre Gasly (Tech 1 Racing) will line up on the second row alongside team-mate Egor Orudzhev (Tech 1 Racing).

The 18 drivers in Group A (those with even race numbers) were faced with cloudy skies, a damp track and buffeting winds when they began the opening qualifying session of the season at 9:00am. Fortunately, conditions gradually improved as the session progressed, allowing the drivers to up their pace. No one went quicker than Matthieu Vaxiviere (Tech 1 Racing), whose time of 2:10.400 put him ahead of Pierre Gasly (Tech 1 Racing) and William Vermont (ARTA Engineering).

“With these track conditions, we knew that the fastest time would come on the final lap,” commented the polesitter afterwards. “I was on the way to doing a very good lap in the middle of the session but got caught up in traffic. My team manager Simon Abadie said there was no point trying to do a Senna lap with people in the way, so I pulled out a Vaxiviere lap just before the chequered flag.”

Vaxiviere’s time also proved too fast for the drivers in Group B, which was headed by Esteban Ocon (ART Junior Team) in a time of 2:10.878. Egor Orudzhev (Tech 1 Racing) and Jake Dennis (Fortec Motorsports) took second and third behind him before a red flag cut the session short.

“I was expecting to improve my time on the last lap but there was a red flag,” said Esteban Ocon. “I have to focus my thoughts on the race now. The first lap will be crucial and I’ll be doing all I can to win.”

The weekend’s opening race gets under way at 13:15.

Official Renault Sport Press Release.

Posted: 27 April 2013
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