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Eurocup Mégane Trophy

Having spent most of the season in pursuit of Bas Schothorst (TDS Racing), Albert Costa (Oregon Team) goes into the final round of the World Series by Renault season in Spain with a 16-point lead over his rival, courtesy of five straight wins. At a track where success has always come his way, the Barcelona driver will be out to secure his first saloon-car title, though Bas Schothorst has far from given up the ghost.

Though a rookie in the event, Albert Costa has made no secret of his desire to win the Eurocup Megane Trophy at the first attempt. That task looked to be impossible after the first six races of the season, in which the Netherlands’ Bas Schothorst, drawing on his experience in the category, posted five wins and a third place to take command in the standings.

Since his last win in Race 2 at the Nürburgring, however, the Dutchman has endured a string of disappointments, while the charging Albert Costa has gone from strength to strength. The Spaniard registered his maiden Megane Trophy win in Race 1 in Germany and notched his second on day two of the Moscow Raceway meeting, the start of a five-race winning streak that included doubles at the Hungaroring and then Paul Ricard.

A whole 49 points adrift when he left the Nürburgring, Albert Costa now enjoys a 16-point lead over his closest rival, putting him in an ideal position to seal victory in what has been a topsy-turvy championship race in reassuringly familiar surroundings. The Spaniard will certainly be feeling at home on his favourite track, where he won in Eurocup Formula Renault 2.0 in 2009 and in the Formula Renault 3.5 Series last year, on his last appearance in a single-seater in 2011.

Bas Schothorst has no intention of making life easy for him, however. Absent from the podium in Russia and Hungary, the determined Dutchman bounced back at Paul Ricard to take second place in Race 2, showing that he is ready to fight every inch of the way.

The two title contenders both have team-mates they can rely on. At TDS Racing, Kelvin Snoeks is the man most likely to come to Bas Schothorst’s aid, while Albert Costa’s Oregon Team colleagues Kevin Gilardoni, Niccolo Nalio and Fabien Thuner are all fighting it out for third place in the standings, the Swiss Fabien Thuner being the only driver other than the leading duo to taste victory this season. While they will be doing all they can to help their team leader secure the title, the two Italians are also anxious to end the season with wins of their own.

Elsewhere, Margot Laffite will be sporting the Ellip6 colours once again, no doubt buoyed by her first points of the season at Paul Ricard, while Andrea Boffo (Torino Motorsport), the 2011 Challenge Formula Renault 2.0 Italy champion, is gearing up for his debut in the event and his first drive in the high-performance saloon car developed by Renault Sport Technologies.

Official Renault Sport Press Release.

Posted: 15 October 2012
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