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Matelli, the 3rd man

After Norman Nato and Stoffel Vandoorne, Franck Matelli is the 3rd driver to engrave his name as one of the 2010 winners. At Magny-Cours, he did it in a master fashion: by doing the hat trick!

The qualifying session took place on a drenched track. But, at the time of the first race, the rain seems to have given everyone a break. After the passage of the F1 driven by Nicolas Prost, former trainee driver of Auto Sport Academy, the twenty academicians – the Moroccan Hamza El Fatouaki being absent – set themselves on the starting grid. For the 2nd time of the season, Franck Matelli is in pole position in front of Alexandre Mantovani, Mathieu Jaminet and the leader Stoffel Vandoorne.

At takeoff, Franck Matelli maintains his position as well as his fellow drivers although Stoffel Vandoorne had to watch Paul Lanchere overtake him, but only for one lap. Behind, Jean-Baptiste Lahaye has already gained two positions whereas Norman Nato comes close to the top ten. At the end of the group, we can find the three feminine drivers engaged in this race. Giada De Zen closes the group but she had to pass by the pits in order to change her front wing.

Well positioned at the commands of the race, the Corsican driver does not intend to release his efforts. The fight taking place behind Alexandre Mantovani is ferocious. Following a contact with Mathieu Jaminet, Paul Lanchere becomes a little handicapped; his front wing is blocked underneath his single-seater. He therefore goes down in the classification.

Pressurised by Stoffel Vandoorne, Alexandre Mantovani lets him by just after mid race. Mathieu Jaminet squeezes in. In 5th position, Jean-Baptiste Lahaye drives along by himself whereas behind, the over takings make the show. Norman Nato continues his rise. He is now in 8th position behind Pierre Sancinéna and Tristan Papavoine. As for Paul Lanchere, he tries to stay within catch of points. Sébastien Le Bras overtakes him for the 9th position and his very last chance to pocket points is threatened by Nicolas De Moura who really does not wish to go home without points in order to honour the Grégory Lemarchal Association he supports and which is present in Magny-Cours this weekend…

Just before the checkered flag, rain begins to fall again, but not enough to disturb Franck Matelli who swooshes through to his first victory of the season. For Stoffel Vandoorne, it is his 5th podium whereas for the young Mathieu Jaminet it is the first time he steps onto the podium. Alexandre Mantovani signs his best result of the season, 4th in front of Jean-Baptiste Lahaye and Norman Nato who will have finally gained 6 places. Tristan Papavoine, Pierre Sancinéna, Sébastien Le Bras and Nicolas De Moura close the group. For her very first race, Cécilia Asquini has no need to be ashamed of herself as she crossed the finishing line in 16th position.

Franck Matelli: « I made a few mistakes at the beginning of the race and Alexandre pressured me but afterwards, he was within the Stoffel’s claws which allowed me to clear myself away from him a little. I insured my advance but I nevertheless had to constantly keep an eye in the rear mirrors, especially towards the end of the race. I am very happy with this first victory that I dedicate to my father, my coach, my sponsors and all those who support me in Corsica. I hope to do as well tomorrow. »

Stoffel Vandoorne: « I made a mistake at the beginning and Paul was able to overtake. Then he had a slight contact with Mathieu and lost precious time. I made the most of that. Once behind Alexandre, I left him no choice and he made a mistake but afterwards, I still lacked a few laps to come back on Franck. A second place is good – which means precious points for the Championship. »

Mathieu Jaminet: « I made a good start and the first few laps were difficult. Then, Stoffel made Alexandre do a mistake and I seized the opportunity. After that, I had at heart to maintain my 3rd position that I am very proud of. A special thanks to my parents and to my sponsors. »

Official Renault Sport Press Release

Posted: 19 June 2010
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