2015 : 10 years for Formula Renault 2.0 Northern European Cup

2015 is the tenth season of the Formula Renault 2.0 Northern European Cup. The Formula Renault 2.0 car has been around for a long time but the history of the Northern European Cup started with the merger of the Formula Renault championships of Germany and the Netherlands.

The partnership between Renault Motorsport Germany and MdH Communications is since 2006 the driving force behind the Formula Renault 2.0 Northern European Cup

Mick de Haas, CEO of MdH Communications says : "We are proud to be still going strong after 10 years. It shows how good the Renault single seater concept is ; it has staying power. We are still here while many other race series and cars have come and gone and we have proven that the series is one of the real stepping stones on the way to Formula 1."

"We are a true European series. The newly formed F4 series are national series but cost the same as us or are even a bit more expensive and still have to prove their staying power. The F3 is three times our budget and only the European F3 Series has survived."

"The young single seater drivers can race from the start of their career all the way to Formula 1 with a Renault product. They can start with the FR1.6 car, then join the NEC 2.0., followed by Eurocup FR2.0. From there to the World Series 3.5ltr and to the absolute top, Formula 1. Of course it is not only the car, you also need to be very talented, have money and a great support system. We work very closely together with the teams in the NEC who in turn support the young drivers and help them grow into future stars."

"Right from the start we have had a very professional team of people working in our series," recalls Ralph Weishaupt, head of Renault Motorsport Germany and series manager of the NEC. "Throughout the years the market has developed and I am very glad that we have developed with the market and shown ourselves adaptable in all circumstances. From the smaller circuits in the beginning we now go to six Formula 1 circuits this year and from a single photographer following the series we are now live on YouTube."

The history of the German Formula Renault Championship started in 1991. From it sprang Formula 1 drivers like Christan Klien (winner 2002), Scott Speed (winner 2004) and test pilot Marcel Lasée (winner 2001). Marcel Tiemann who won the championship in 1994, became a winner of the 24 Hours at the Nürburgring together with Pedro Lamy.

Some former winners of the Formula Renault championship are still connected to Renault series. The 1997 winner Robert Lechner, owner of Lechner Racing, started with four young drivers in 2014 in the Formula Renault 1.6 NEC Junior. The 1995 winner, Ralf Druckemüller, is now an engineer and looks after drivers in the Formula Renault 2.0 NEC, most recently after the Dutch driver Roy Geerts. Geerts was the 2013 winner of the FR1.6 NEC Junior.

The Dutch Formula Renault series started in 1991 but became a Benelux series from 1996 to 2002. The Dutch winners of 2003 and 2004, Paul Meijer and Junior Strous, went to the USA a few years later to drive in the Indy Lights series. The 2005 champion, Renger van der Zande, started in 2011 with Mercedes in the DTM. 

In Formula 1 in the past and present you’ll find a number of drivers who all have raced for one or more years in the Formula Renault 2.0 Northern European Cup.

Vallteri Bottas won his second season in the NEC in 2008 and is now the star driver for the William F1 team. Daniil Kvyat (seasons 2010 - 2012) now races for the Red Bull F1 team. Carlos Sainz Jr. (winner 2011) has just joined the Torro Rosso team while Sébastien Buemi (season 2006) used to race for this team. Buemi still continues to compete in a Renault product in the FIA Formula-e. Robin Frijns (season 2010 and 2011) was the Caterham F1 team test driver in 2014.

Kevin Magnussen (season 2009) raced in Formula 1 in 2014 for the McLaren Formula 1 team and will be the team’s official test driver in 2015. Other sons of famous fathers who have raced in the series are amongst others Josh Hill, Johnny Jr. Cecotto, Louis Déletraz, Aurélien Panis, Jules Gounon and Sean Walkinsaw.

More info about the championship on
www.necup.com and www.renault-sport.de

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