Tag Archives: Racing

RENAULT SPORT

RENAULT SPORT RACING HONOURS IT’S 2016 CHAMPIONS

The awards ceremony for the Renault Sport Series’ was held Friday December 9 at the Atelier Renault on the Champs-Élysées in Paris. In the presence of Jérôme Stoll, President of Renault Sport Racing and many guests, this exceptional season came to its conclusion with the rewarding of the stars of 2016.

Renault has been a major contender in motorsport for more than 115 years. This year it opened a new chapter in its long history, emphasising more than ever competition in the centre of its strategy via Renault Sport Racing, the entity that is now based in Viry. This evening was also the occasion to draw the conclusions on the customer competition seasons in rallying and circuit racing, and to hand out the trophies to the laureates.

Clio R3T France Trophy: the triumph of Charles Martin

After dominating the season, Charles Martin received his cup from Jean-Pascal Dauce, Director of the Renault Sport Racing Customer Competition Programme. Charles Martin also picked up the Junior trophy and the Jean Ragnotti Best Performer award. The French driver was joined by fellow competitors William Pitot and Kevin van Deijne. Charlotte Dalmasso, French Rallywoman Champion, and Manu Guigou, third in the French Rally Championship, were also rewarded thanks to their exceptional performances in the Clio R3T.

Coupe de France Renault Clio Cup: Éric Trémoulet takes the title

Jean-Pascal Dauce also handed Éric Trémoulet his winner’s trophy as his rivals Jimmy and Teddy Clairet looked on, but they combined to give Team Clairet Sport the team championship. Pascal Arellano and Jeremy Sarhy were also honoured for their titles in the Gentlemen and Junior categories. After a season of hard battling, the five men will come together in the Team Clio Cup France at the 24-Hours of Dubai next month.

Renault Sport Trophy: a parade of champions

Laurens van den Acker, Directeur du Design Renault et initiateur du projet Renault Sport R.S. 01, montait ensuite sur scène pour remettre son prix à son compatriote Pieter Schothorst, sacré en PRO. Le Néerlandais faisait de même pour Fabian Schiller, titré en AM ainsi qu’en Endurance avec Markus Palttala. Grands animateurs d’une deuxième saison animée, Kevin Korjus, Fran Rueda, Miguel Ramos et Fredrik Blomstedt étaient également récompensés aux côtés du Team Marc VDS EG 0,0, lauréat chez les équipes.

Laurens van den Acker, Renault Director of Design and the creator of the Renault Sport R.S. 01 project, was next on stage to hand his countryman Pieter Schothorst his trophy for winning the PRO category. The Dutchman did likewise for AM category champion, Fabian Schiller who also won the Endurance crown with Markus Palttala. Front runners in a very competitive second season, Kevin Korjus, Fran Rueda, Miguel Ramos and Fredrik Blomstedt were also rewarded as well as winning team Team Marc VDS EG 0,0.

Eurocup Formula Renault 2.0: the consecration for Lando Norris

For more than 45 years, Formula Renault has revealed the biggest hopefuls of tomorrow. Following the McLaren BRDC Autosport Awards, Lando Norris was awarded the Eurocup Formula Renault 2.0 winner’s cup and rookie of the year title from Renault Sport Academy Director Mia Sharizman. His toughest rivals, Dorian Boccolacci, Max Defourny and newcomers Sacha Fenestraz and Will Palmer were also honoured, as was Josef Kaufmann Racing, which won the team title for the second consecutive year.

Renault Sport Racing, even stronger in 2017

Renault Sport Racing Managing Director, Cyril Abiteboul concluded the award ceremony in turning to the future of the categories in 2017. The commercial success of the latest generation of the Clio Cup has enabled it to solidify its presence in many markets. Also aiming to participate in Renault’s notoriety, trophies dedicated in France, Spain and Switzerland await the Clio R3T. On the circuits, the Renault Sport R.S. 01 will now demonstrate its qualities in prestigious races around the world. Finally, the Eurocup Formula Renault will have an improved calendar where Monaco and eight other 1 tracks, as well as the Pau street circuit, will allow for detecting young champions and perhaps future members of the Renault Sport Academy

FORMULA 1

LCH IS HE TOYING WITH NICO?

A dominant victory for Lewis Hamilton who wins in the United States for the fifth time. He trims Nico Rosberg’s championship lead down to 26 points, but the German still has the title in his hands at least that how it looks from the F1W studios. Here is a word from Ricciardo…

DANIEL RICCIARDO : “In the beginning of the race the supersoft tyres helped me but the actual start I felt wasn’t really that much better than the Mercedes. Then I saw Nico going to the outside so it gave me an opportunity on the inside. Obviously I would have loved to have lead out of Turn 1 but second was good enough. I tried to stay with Lewis the first couple of laps but then his soft tyres were able to go a bit better. I think we were looking good for P2 but then the Virtual Safety Car didn’t work in our favour today. I’m not going to be too disappointed, it’s just cool to be on the podium here. I love coming here, the anthem was pretty awesome before the race, I had goosebumps, I’m not gonna lie, and then the podium after was great. It’s another big bag of points and we at least had Nico’s pace so that’s encouraging and we’ll try and do what we can in the next few days. Obviously Max and Kimi had their misfortunes today so it was just me and Seb out there, but we still gained a little bit on Ferrari so we’re looking good. We’ll try and keep going like this and get on the podiums for the last few races.”

 

 

FORMULA 1

RED BULL FINDING PACE IN PRACTICE FOR THE USGP

DANIEL RICCIARDO
First Practice Session: 1:39.963, Position: 7, Laps: 26
Second Practice Session: 1:37.552, Position: 2, Laps: 33
“I’m happy with today. This morning was solid and the long run pace was good. We made a few changes in between the two sessions and look pretty good for now so hopefully we’ll stay like that. On our long run pace we look like we’re able to match Mercedes, possibly quicker, so if we get the pace we had today against Mercedes on Sunday it’s going to be a fun race. It is only Friday though so let’s see what they’re doing tomorrow but it’s nice to start the weekend on the right foot. I don’t think we’ve got hours and hours of work ahead of us. Just a little bit of fine tuning as always but we don’t have to search for too much at the moment.”
MAX VERSTAPPEN
First Practice Session: 1:39.379, Position: 3, Laps: 28
Second Practice Session: 1:38.258, Position: 5, Laps: 27
“We tried some different setups from FP1 and FP2 to try and find a strong feeling with the car. In the end we found a good one for the long runs on soft tyres but we still need to improve the short run pace. I’m quite confident we can do that tomorrow. We got some good data from the short runs but struggled to find a clean lap. We changed the setup during FP2 in order to improve some issues, which is why my car was worked on for a while. The supersoft seemed to lose grip every lap and get slower, so I think for the race it will be interesting. The long run pace seemed good, I had a Ferrari in front of me and I was catching it so I think that is a positive sign.”

WRC

CITROËN REVEALS ITS CREWS FOR THE 2017 AND 2018 FIA WORLD RALLY CHAMPIONSHIPS

Just a few days after the Citroën C3 WRC concept car was unveiled at the Paris Motor Show, Citroën Racing has announced the crews that will be competing for the team in the next two seasons of the FIA World Rally Championship. Already confirmed to drive for the team until 2018, Kris Meeke/Paul Nagle will be joined by Craig Breen/Scott Martin and Stéphane Lefebvre/Gabin Moreau. Chairman of Abu Dhabi Racing, Sheikh Khalid Al Qassimi will also be competing with his co-driver Chris Patterson at some events in 2017.

Step by step, Citroën Racing continues to assemble the necessary ingredients for its return as a works team in the FIA World Rally Championship. Since April of this year, the Citroën C3 WRC has completed seven development tests, both on gravel and tarmac, and is now very close to the final version.

Until 16 October, visitors to the Paris Motor Show can also admire the Citroën C3 WRC concept car, a veritable exercise in style that heralds the new generation of World Rally Cars, which are set to make their competitive debut at the 2017 Rallye Monte-Carlo.

By announcing now their driver and co-driver line-up for the 2017 and 2018 seasons, Citroën Racing takes another important step forward, one which has been highly anticipated by many WRC observers!

After confirming Kris Meeke and Paul Nagle at the end of last year, the line-up is now completed by two crews considered to be among the most promising young talents in the WRC. Having come to prominence in the rally programmes of the PSA Group and competing this season for the Abu Dhabi Total WRT, Craig Breen/Scott Martin and Stéphane Lefebvre/Gabin Moreau convinced Citroën to put their faith in youth.

This choice is very much in line with Citroën’s long-held policy aimed at identifying and developing talented young rally drivers. In the last 15 years or more, Citroën has identified some of the best in the business: Loeb, Ogier, Sordo, Neuville, Camilli and of course Meeke. Breen and Lefebvre are destined to add their names to this illustrious list!

At the start of the season, the team will enter two Citroën C3 WRCs: one for Kris Meeke and the other for either Craig Breen or Stéphane Lefebvre, who will alternate driving duties. The exact distribution of events to drivers will be announced at a later stage and Citroën will start entering three cars as soon as possible. The FIA’s World Motorsport Council recently decided it would let manufacturers enter three cars, the top two scoring points towards the Manufacturers World Championship.

At some rounds of the 2017 World Championship, a fourth Citroën C3 WRC will also be entered for Sheikh Khalid Al Qassimi and Chris Patterson.

Already involved in the development of the Citroën C3 WRC, Kris Meeke, Craig Breen, Stéphane Lefebvre and Sheikh Khalid Al Qassimi will continue to conduct testing until the new car completes homologation. At the same time, they will be competing at this year’s Rally de España (Meeke, Breen, Al-Qassimi) and Wales Rally GB (Meeke, Breen, Lefebvre) in order to acquire experience driving the current cars.

Yves Matton, Citroën Racing Team Principal: “We had several scenarios regarding the choice of our crews for the future. Kris Meeke was confirmed at the end of last year and has become the natural leader of the team. As well as challenging for the lead on each of his appearances in 2016, winning in Portugal and in Finland, he has also done most of the development work for our Citroën C3 WRC. In choosing two young crews to complete the line-up, I don’t think we can be accused of having gone for the easy option. But this original solution is very much aligned with Citroën’s mindset. And having seen them compete this season for the Abu Dhabi Total WRT, we believe in the potential of Craig Breen and Stéphane Lefebvre. They have the natural talent, motivation and work ethic to win rallies. I would also say we are proud to take these young drivers – who have been with the PSA Group for many years – up to the top level of the sport. At the start of the season, we’ll have no choice but to have them take turns behind the wheel in the second Citroën C3 WRC. However, as soon as possible, our three crews will be starting each round. Sheikh Khalid Al-Qassimi is a true ambassador for rallying in the Middle-East and we are very pleased to support him in his approach.”

F1Weekly podcast # 712

CLARK CONTINUES TO DESPAIR WHILST NASIR IS JOYFUL AND FILED WITH GLEE OVER THE 2016 FORMULA 1 SEASON AND IN ORDER TO CONTINUE KICKING THE CAN DOWN THE ROAD HEAR ARE MALAYSIAN GRAND PRIX PREVIEWS FROM NICO HULKENBERG AND SERGIO PEREZ…

Nico on Malaysia
Nico: “It feels strange to be going to Sepang at the end of the season, but it’s also a nice change to mix up the calendar. It’s one of the hottest events of the year and the temperatures make it quite tough on tyre degradation. The tyres will be important here, managing them throughout the race is crucial and it’s an area we really concentrate on understanding with the engineers.
“Coming after Singapore, I hope we will be a bit more acclimatised to the hot weather – it may even feel like a relief after the real oven of Marina Bay! I’d rank these two events as the toughest races of the season from a physical point of view – you really need to be at the peak of you fitness to do well here.
“Most of the races I remember in Malaysia have seen crazy weather conditions, in April, with monsoon rain, red flags and aquaplaning everywhere. I am quite curious to see how it will change now that the race is in October. It’s a track where I have scored some good points and where I had a strong race in 2014, so I hope to go there and create some more special memories.”
Sergio on Malaysia
Sergio Perez hopes to score more points in Sepang this weekend.
Sergio: “Getting a good result after a difficult weekend, as in Singapore, is a big boost for everyone in the team. It shows we can overcome challenges and that you should never give up.
“Kuala Lumpur is a very interesting and busy city. There are many things to do and see so it’s always cool to be there. The weather usually plays a big role in the race and it will be interesting to see how this year’s changes to the calendar affect the weekend, with the race going from April to October.
“Sepang is usually a circuit where rain is a certainty rather than a possibility. It’s where I scored my first podium in Formula One, in 2012, thanks to making the most of the weather conditions. Being in a position to fight for the win came as a shock for me as we did not expect it, but the emotions of that day will stay with me forever.
“It’s another physical race, with the heat and humidity. The track itself is very long and there are a several technical corners. There are long straights with big braking zones that require precision and the high temperatures take the life out of the tyres quickly, especially the rear ones. We have done well in similar hot conditions this season so hopefully we can be on the pace once again.”
[audio:http://www.podtrac.com/pts/redirect.mp3/mp3.f1weekly.com/podcasts/09-26-16f1weekly712.mp3]

WTCC

CITROËN CELEBRATES FIA WTCC CROWN WITH A TREBLE!

A day after securing its third consecutive FIA World Touring Car Championship title, Citroën shone in the races at the Shanghai circuit, with José María López, Yvan Muller and Mehdi Bennani giving the C-Elysée WTCC its first one-two-three finish of the season! Yvan Muller’s two podium spots mean he now stands alone in second place in the Drivers’ World Championship, with a healthy lead over his rivals. Mehdi Bennani, meanwhile, has sewn up the WTCC Trophy, the competition for independent drivers.

As always, the huge stand at the Shanghai International Circuit was packed to capacity when the cars lined up on the starting grid. For the reverse-grid opening race, Yvan Muller and José María López started from eighth and tenth positions respectively.

SLR driver Tom Chilton got off to a flyer in his Citroën C-Elysée WTCC, moving into second place. Back in the chasing pack, Yvan Muller and José María López were engaged in something of a free-for-all. The Citroën Total drivers ended lap 1 in sixth and ninth respectively, with their cars already a little bruised and battered from their rivals’ attacks!

On lap 2, Yvan snatched fifth place, while Pechito found himself in a fight for seventh. The safety car made an appearance after Filippi was forced to abandon, causing the cars to bunch up somewhat before hostilities resumed for a further eleven laps.

Shortly afterwards, there was a turning point as Tarquini ran into Chilton. Both drivers were forced to withdraw from the race, enabling Yvan Muller to climb to third behind Michelisz and Björk. José María López also moved up into fifth.

The crowd was exhilarated as the gaps between the top five closed up with three laps remaining. The top two made contact on several occasions, with Björk eventually emerging victorious, ahead of Michelisz, Muller, López and Catsburg!

After the podium ceremony, the mechanics had just a few minutes’ repair time to remove all traces of the jousting of the opening race. Their sterling work meant José María López and Yvan Muller were able to go into the main race with their cars in perfect condition.

Once again, the Citroën C-Elysée WTCCs started superbly. Poleman José María López was the first man to turn, followed by Yvan Muller and Mehdi Bennani. The leader wasted no time in opening up a gap between himself and his teammate. In a much less turbulent race than the first, Pechito never looked back, speeding to his eighth win of the season.

Yvan Muller, meanwhile, held off Mehdi Bennani to clinch a second Shanghai podium spot. That rounded off an excellent weekend for Yvan, which saw him score 36 points, compared with 5 for his nearest rival for the Championship runner-up spot.

Mehdi Bennani beamed from the third step of the podium, having achieved his primary goal by winning the WTCC Trophy for independent drivers. The Moroccan driver saw off the challenge of his teammate Tom Chilton with a meeting to spare.