Press release | October 19, 2019
After a rainy day on Thursday, dedicated to private tests, the competition really started on Friday, with free practice in each category, on the Nevers Magny-Cours circuit. A first day which was mild from a meteorological point of view but more rough on the track with some off-roads.
Friday was the scene of the first race of the weekend, the Mitjet Sprint series. The leader of the Super Tourism Championship, Victor Weyrich (Cool Racing), made things clear in the two qualifying sessions, winning both pole positions in the game.
Race 1 (Friday): Victor Weyrich, imperial in qualifying, perfectly managed to protect his pole position and cross the dreaded Adelaide turn several lengths ahead! After a good start, Clément Berlié (VIP Challenge) finished the first lap in second position after defeating Milan Petelet (MV2S Racing), as well as Alex Marchois (MV2S Racing), who made a mistake in the Lycée’s corner. At the top, Victor Weyrich did not fail to win his 11th victory, from the start, at Magny-Cours. Second, Clément Berlié did not succeed in following the pace of the leader, conceding 5 seconds on the finish line. Despite a complicated first round, Milan Petelet quickly regained his health and finished on the podium.
The 2L category was very contested between Povilas Jankavicius (Arctic Energy) and Patrice Sulpice (Cool Racing). The Lithuanian, who was delayed in the first lap, did not lose his footing and attacked Patrice Sulpice, who is making his motorsport debut this weekend. Povilas Jankavicius won against the French.
It should be mentioned that following a free practice run, Thomas Humeau (MV2S Racing) was unable to take part in the qualifying rounds or at the start of race 1.
Race 2 (Saturday): Once again poleman, and boosted by his success the day before, Victor Weyrich has only victory in sight. As usual, the driver of Mitjet ST n°24 controls the start with a master hand so as not to find himself under threat from his opponents. Clément Berlié would see himself hooked on a third win this season and snuggled up in the aileron of the leader. He gradually gave way and was no longer in a position to threaten Victor Weyrich. Jérémy Lourenço (MV2S Racing), third, tried everything to get back on Clément Berlié, in vain. Positions do not change between start and finish. Victor Weyrich won ahead of Clément Berlié and Jérémy Loucenço. It should be mentioned that Milan Petelet, who switched from 2L to ST, suffered a technical problem in the last lap.
New win for Povilas Jankavicius in 2L, ahead of Patrice Sulpice who continues to gain experience at the wheel of his car. Christophe Contre (MV2S Racing), dropped out in the second lap, probably due to a technical problem.
Race 3: Mitjet drivers meet on the starting grid in the early afternoon to compete in their third race. The tension is at its peak and they are ready to fight under a still threatening sky but the rain is out. Winner of the first two races, Victor Weyrich gives the first push again on the grid. This time, Clément Berlié followed him in the first corner and stayed close. The battle was tough between Milan Petelet, then third after an excellent first round, and Alex Marchoix. He has the final say in the braking of the Lycée’s corner. Shortly after mid-race, the safety car intervened after stopping on the edge of the track of Mitjet n°01 by Patrice Sulpice, in the first sector. The restart is controlled by the leader while Alex Marchoix chases the second place he takes against Clément Berlié at the Château d’eau. Second, Alex Marchoix reduces the gap on Victor Weyrich who crosses the line with only 6 tenths of a lead! Third place for Clément Berlié.
The Lithuanian anthem once again rang at Magny-Cours to celebrate the victory of Povilas Jankavicius, in 2L.
Race 4: Track conditions deteriorated for this fourth and final Mitjet race of the weekend. As usual, Victor Weyrich keeps a cool head to maintain the pole position lead. In the middle of the ST peloton, Franck Marchoix distinguished himself at the start and placed n°14 in second place. In the Adelaide bend, Victor Weyrich chose the external trajectory while Franck Marchoix wanted to make it the internal one. The first two neutralize each other, Clément Berlié, third, inherits the leadership but has to fight against Jeremy Lourenço and Milan Petelet. On the ascent to the Château d’eau, Jérémy Lourenço took the lead in the race, before being overtaken by Milan Petelet. At the bottom of the peloton, Victor Weyrich is trying to catch up. To assist him, a safety car! The leader of the 2L category, Christophe Contre is stopped in sector 2 and causes a neutralization, 6 minutes before the finish.
The safety car disappears for only one lap. Victor Weyrich, who managed to climb up to third place at the time, came out of the last chicane perfectly. He took the lead over Jérémy Lourenço in the first corner, then caught up with Milan Petelet in the following corners, before overtaking him at the Château d’eau. It is four out of four for Victor Weyrich this weekend, who is increasing his lead in the championship. Milan Petelet, second, set his best result of the weekend, ahead of Jérémy Lourenço.
A solid performance also for Povilas Jankavicius in 2L who is the strong man of this second part of the season. Patrice Sulpice saw the finish of the race and stepped on the podium again during his first weekend in competition! A self-sacrifice that commands respect …
Due to the very close gaps between Amaury Bonduel and Sacha Lehmann, both LAMO Racing drivers, the first race can only be very competitive!
Leader of the championship, Amaury Bonduel started from pole position in the early afternoon. A few drops of water fall to the north of the circuit and the Adelaide corner is the scene of a first incident. The poleman ignites his tires but manages to negotiate the corner. Behind him, Sacha Lehmann was crashed by Lebreton (Formula Motorsport), who lost control of his car. The two cars remained on the grid while Alain Bucher (LAMO Racing) also suffered damage on the first lap.
The safety car on the track was dispatched but the race management finally decided to raise the red flag. The track is declared wet and the teams are allowed to change tyres in the pit lane, pending the restart.
The debates resumed under the leadership and command of Amaury Bonduel, for one round only. The fight between the Gentlemen Drivers caused some damage, starting with the spinner of the car of Walter Rykart (Formula Motorsport), which caused a new Safety Car intervention. With 9 minutes to go, the green flag is raised. The Belgian driver, Amaury Bonduel, is untouchable but everything remains to be done for the other two places on the podium. Baptiste Berthelot (CD Sport) chases Pietro Peccenini (TS Corse) in front of him and finds the opening at the Chateau d’eau. Baptiste Berthelot then came back very strongly on Augustin Collinot (LAMO Racing), second. The two cars are only 2 tenths apart at the finish, behind Amaury Bonduel who wins his fifth consecutive victory, after a fantastic race!
Pietro Peccenini made a perfect performance and dominated with head and shoulders this first race, in the category dedicated to Gentlemen Drivers. He wins ahead of Fabrice Rosselo (Graff) and Howard Sklar (TS Corse).
It is on a track declared wet by the race management that the start of the sixth race in the Proto category is given, during the day, but which will end in the middle of the night! Caution should be exercised by all teams, who have chosen to put on the appropriate tires. Sébastien Page, behind the wheel of the No. 7 Norma M30 from Realteam, has made a good start to keep the lead in the first corner. However, Matthias Kaiser, second in the No. 26 Wimmer Werk Motorsport JS P3 Ligier, remains close enough to the leader to overtake him in the next corner. In the peloton, we do not give each other any gifts, until we make contact at the Château d’eau, between Graff and Team Virage.
So, Kaiser took the lead as the battle raged behind him. Nicolas Melin was particularly effective in the first laps, taking the Norma n°21/DB Autosport to third place after starting sixth. Among the drivers in high spirits at the beginning of the race, Snoussi Ben Moussa. The Ligier n°84/La Filière FS driver, despite a pit stop before the start, due to a slight door problem, is catching up by showing an excellent pace, managing to catch the top 5.
The videographer spent several minutes for the tough duel between Norma No. 7 and Ligier No. 14/Inter Europol Competition. At the wheel of this car, Constantin Scholl distinguished himself and climbed to second place.
Before the end of the first hour, a Full Course Yellow interrupts the debates. Norma No. 21/DB Autosport was spinning in the first sector and, in the manoeuvre, struck the rear of Ligier No. 84. Ben Moussa cannot avoid contact and enters the pits with a damaged car (right rear triangle). The damage is repaired, the n°84 starts again unlike the n°21 which is forced to abandon. This neutralisation is the right moment to make the first stops through the stands.
This first stop is very significant for Ligier n°14. Within the Polish team, we choose to put on slick tires. Paul Scheuschner, on this Ligier, then comes third, behind the previous leader, Kaiser, and the new leader, William Duncan, on Norma n°10/Team Excool. He was caught by his pursuers and, on lap 34, Scheuschner took the lead and headed off. The bet on the slick tires is good as he leads the race for 26 consecutive laps. In the third hour, the n°14 is pushed into her garage. The drive shaft, on the left rear, is broken and it takes more than 20 minutes to change the part. Meanwhile, Kaiser took over the race controls while the Norma n°7 of the polemen made a series of pit stops and moved up the hierarchy.
On a delayed strategy, Norma n°10 regularly returns to the front but while Vincent Capillaire, second in Ligier n°26, has already served the three handicap penalties to balance the crews, Garry Findlay is handing over the wheel from n°10 to Matthew Manderson, who is second, behind the first one.
In the fourth and last hour of the race, the rain returns and intensifies as the minutes go by. The drivers stopped to put on rain tires again and Capillary kept the right course in the lead. Behind him, Manderson is less comfortable, losing almost 10 seconds per lap to David Droux and the N°7 Norma. The Swiss driver is the only one to turn below 2 minutes. He is attacking! The gap drops rapidly and, with 13 minutes to go before the checkered presentation, Droux overtakes Manderson for second place.
Leader of the race and the championship, Vincent Capillaire is careful and crosses the finish line more than one lap ahead of his pursuers. Accompanied by Matthias Kaiser, the Manceau climbed on the first step of the podium, ahead of David Droux and Sébastien Page. The podium is completed by Garry Findlay, William Duncan and Matthew Manderson, after their first race in the category.
Despite a dangerous race for Snoussi Ben Moussa and Nigel Bailly, the duo from Ligier n°84 won the Ultimate class.
Vincent Capillaire, Matthias Kaiser, Wimmer Werk Motorsport and Ligier won the Proto Championship of the Ultimate Cup Series, even before the final at Paul Ricard. They have won four times in five participations.
GT: Undoubtedly, the qualifying exercise was a success for the crew of the Ferrari 488 GT3 n°1 of the Visiom team. Jean-Paul Pagny, Thierry Perrier and Jean-Bernard Bouvet took pole position thanks to the best average in 2:00.216, for only 117 thousandths ahead of the Renault R.S.01 n°15 Krafft Racing, shared by Claude Degremont, Paul Aegerter and Milan Petelet.
CN: Nicolas Schatz, seven-time French Mountain Champion and newcomer to the Ultimate Cup Series, made things very exciting during the qualifying session. The teammate of Jonathan Brossard completed the 4.411 kilometers of the Nivernais track in 1:56.876, taking the pole position.
The weekend is not yet over as four races are scheduled for this Sunday!
Copyright : Hugues Laroche / Ultimate Cup Series