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Eurocup Mégane Trophy

Having arrived at the Hungaroring 32 points behind championship leader Bas Schothorst (TDS Racing), Albert Costa (Oregon Team) is now just four points adrift of the Dutchman in the Eurocup Megane Trophy after picking up his second win of the weekend. After a frantic first few laps, Albert Costa never looked in any real trouble and took the victory ahead of Oregon Team team-mates Fabien Thuner and Kevin Gilardoni, making it a one-two-three result for the Italian team.

Albert Costa took pole position once more, but later had his fastest time removed for exceeding the track limits. The Spaniard was therefore relegated to fourth on the grid, where he shared the second row with Bas Schothorst. Kevin Gilardoni was duly promoted to pole and started the race alongside Fabien Thuner.

In a frenzied first lap, Kevin Gilardoni managed to hold on to the lead, while Albert Costa and Bas Schothorst both overtook Fabien Thuner. Behind them, Marguerite Laffite (Oregon Team), Niccolo Nalio (Oregon Team), Michaël Munemann (Algarve Pro Racing) and Omar Mambretti (Oregon Team) all collided. Amid the chaos of the first lap, Stefano Comini, who had started from last place, managed to work his way up to sixth.

On lap two, Albert Costa moved past Kevin Gilardoni and seized the race lead. Bas Schothorst then tried to do the same, but the Dutchman ran wide and was promptly overtaken by Fabien Thuner and Stefano Comini (Team Lompech Sport).

Albert Costa then pulled away from team-mates Kevin Gilardoni and Fabien Thuner before the mandatory round of refuelling stops. Stefano Comini was the first to go into the pits, but the Swiss was then forced to retire due to a technical problem.

After all the drivers had been into the pits, Albert Costa held a nine-second lead over Fabien Thuner, who found himself in second following a perfect stop. Bas Schothorst was in fourth at this stage, ahead of TDS Racing team-mates Tim Coronel and Jeroen Schothorst. The latter, first in the Gentlemen Drivers category, was then handed a 25-second penalty for exceeding the track limits.

At the end of a brilliant drive, Albert Costa took the chequered flag for his third consecutive race victory – his fourth in total this season – ahead of team-mates Fabien Thuner and Kevin Gilardoni. Bas Schothorst, fourth, is now just four points ahead of Albert Costa at the top of the championship standings. Jean-Charles Miginiac (Team Lompech Sport), meanwhile, finished first in the Gentleman Drivers category to take another step towards the title.

What they said

Albert Costa: “Today, starting from fourth, I wanted first and foremost to gain points on Bas Schothorst. I got away to a very good start and then waited for the right moment to overtake. It’s been the perfect weekend for me, and a great performance from the team. It’s great to have such quick team-mates. I’m still second in the championship, so I still have it all to do.”

Fabien Thuner: “I had a clutch problem yesterday, but today everything worked perfectly. I was a bit quicker than Kevin, but I didn’t want to make a move as it could have jeopardised the one-two-three finish for Oregon. It was my pitstop and the following lap that made the difference.”

Kevin Gilardoni: “Thanks to these two podium finishes, I’m now third in the championship. My goal now is to finish in the top three in the overall standings. I also need to win a race before the end of the season, and I have four more chances to make it happen.”

Official Renault Sport Press Release.

Posted: 16 September 2012
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