Sacha Fenestraz (Tech 1 Racing) become the first in the Eurocup Formula Renault 2.0 to win at Monaco. The Franco-Argentinean rookie took on the horrendous weather conditions to win the curtain raiser to the F1 Grand Prix of Monaco and received the winner’s trophy from Thierry Bolloré, Renault Competition Deputy Director. Sacha Fenestraz was joined on the podium by Ferdinand Habsburg (Fortec Motorsports), who won the pole yesterday before the enforcement of the penalty he received at Motorland Aragón, and Max Defourny (R-ace GP). The race did not complete 75% of its scheduled length, and thus half-points were awarded and Lando Norris (Josef Kaufmann Racing), 16th today, still leads in the general classification.
Due to a heavy downpour on the streets of Monaco this Sunday morning, the delayed start got underway with two laps behind the safety car. When the green was given, Sacha Fenestraz held onto the lead opposite Max Defourny, who was surprised by Ferdinand Habsburg on the inside at Massenet.
The Austrian immediately began to pressure the leader before the return of the safety car after Bruno Baptista (Fortec Motorsports) had contact with the member of the Sahara Force India Academy Jehan Daruvala (Josef Kaufmann Racing) at the Chicane. The Brazilian received a two-spot grid penalty in his next race. During the safety car period, David Porcelli (MGR Motorsport) went off at Sainte Dévote.
The race re-started and the positions remained the same. While trying move back to second place, against Ferdinand Habsburg, Max Defourny went wide at Rascasse and Dorian Boccolacci took advantage to move between his two rivals before the red flag was shown. The duel between Gabriel Aubry (Tech 1 Racing) and Harrison Scott (AVF by Adrián Vallés) for seventh place came to an end after contact at Saint Dévote.
The Monaco round of the Eurocup Formula Renault 2.0 was officially completed and the final classification was based on lap seven running order. Sacha Fenestraz took the victory ahead of Ferdinand Habsburg and Max Defourny. Dorian Boccolacci finished just off the podium, followed by the AVF entries of Adrián Vallés and Nikita Mazepin, Sahara Force India development driver, Henrique Chaves and Harrison Scott, who received a one-spot penalty that Gabriel Aubry made the most of, while Will Palmer (R-ace GP) and Julien Falchero (R-ace GP) closed out the list of point scorers.
Sacha Fenestraz: “It is just amazing! To win at Monaco, in front of the F1 community, for the first participation of the Eurocup Formula Renault 2.0 à Monaco is fantastic. It would be hard to ask for anything more! The weekend got off to a good start and finished with a perfect ending. The Tech 1 Racing team has a lot of experience with three wins in the Formula Renault 3.5 Series and the guys did such a perfect job with the car that I just had to concentrate on my driving! In the race, Habsburg was putting on the pressure, but I was able to pull away despite a few scares, most notably at the first corner. Following a scoreless first meeting, I am really happy with this success. The party with my brother in-law, José Maria Lopez should be good! He already called to celebrate his double win on the Nordschleife and my win!”
Ferdinand Habsburg: “It means a lot to finish on the podium at Monaco and not just for me! It is important for my sponsors, my family, my fans and everyone who has supported me to allow me to demonstrate my talent in front of so many people. For me, the coolest thing was yesterday in taking pole position. Due to my penalty received at Motorland Aragón, I started third, but I made a great pass to pick up a place. I saw a gap, I went for it and it worked. All of this is excellent for my confidence and I want to thank the team for the fantastic job they did! I am really delighted with how this weekend went that proved that I can be on pole and on the podium in my first go on a circuit. After this performance, I am really looking forward to the next round!”
Max Defourny: “With Lando Norris starting at the back of the grid, I had to take maximum points because this kind of opportunity to get back into the championship is rare. I absolutely had to finish the race in the best possible position. I think our pace was good, but I got passed twice by some risky attacks. If I didn’t let them by, we would’ve have finished in the wall. I preferred to play it safe and guarantee the points although I would have liked to have won. I put into perspective in saying to myself that in the future we remember the champions more than winners at Monaco!”
Provisional General Classification*
1. Lando Norris (Josef Kaufmann Racing) 68
2. Max Defourny (R-ace GP) 62,5
3. Harrison Scott (AVF by Adrián Vallés) 44
4. Dorian Boccolacci (Tech 1 Racing) 37
5. Jehan Daruvala (Josef Kaufmann Racing) 25
* Results subject to confirmation following technical and sporting verifications