The #21 Equipe Verschuur Renault Sport R.S. 01 of Pieter and Jeroen Schothorst led the way in the Renault Sport Trophy collective tests at the Autódromo Fernanda Pires da Silva. With Pieter leading the PRO championship and the duo still in contention for the Endurance title, the Dutch duo clocked a best lap of 1:37.157, ahead of the #7 V8 Racing(Pastorelli-Beelen) and the #3 R-ace GP (Korjus-Haezebrouck).
Three 55-minute collective test sessions were the order of the day for the Renault Sport Trophy competitors.
V8 Racing emerges from the fog
Shortened by five minutes due to fog, the opening session went in favour of the #6 V8 Racing Renault Sport R.S.01 (Webster-Freymuth). While the #21 Equipe Verschuur quickly took control of the session, they were bested very late in the session. The #3 R-ace GP finished third in a session that was marked by a red flag stoppage provoked by the #2 R-ace GP (Owens-Blomstedt).
The Schothorsts in the lead before the rain
In session two, Pieter Schothorst was quick to lower the reference time. A time that soon bettered by the #7 V8 Racing and the R-ace GP #3, but the Dutch driver answered back with a time of 1:37.157 to lead the way.
The final session of the day began at an accelerated pace led by the #19 Equipe Verschuur (S. Schothorst – Ramos), but soon it began to rain. The order remained unchanged after the stoppage provoked by the #5 Oregon Team (Moleiro-Baptista). The duo of Schothorst-Ramos held on to best time at 1:37.894 ahead of the #16 Duqueine Engineering (Panciatici-Soave) and the #7 V8 Racing.
Pieter Schothorst : “We had a very solid day. We were quick in the first two sessions. Unfortunately, the track was damp in the third session and that upset our plans to some extent. I still think we made the right choice in saving our rain tyres for tomorrow, because it looks like it will rain during qualifying. I am confident that no matter the conditions and ready to race for the title as early as tomorrow. I know that if I win the Endurance intermediate classification, it will be done. If I don’t see an opportunity, I won’t take any unnecessary risks, because the crown remains the goal.”
Fredrik Blomstedt : “I began the day in the car, but after six laps, the team had to change the engine. It took some time but we were ready for the final session. Sadly, the conditions were really difficult. I would have preferred to have a calm and complete day with the Endurance title to race for. We hope it will rain again tomorrow to make up for our delay !”
Josh Webster : « “It’s nice to be back in the Renault Sport Trophy for the final meeting at Estoril ! I know the track a little bit after doing a GP3 Series test some years ago. The first session went well. We set the best time with the car that had been driven by Carmen Jorda and Jordan Grogor. It was fast straight away we had just had to look after the whereabouts. With the weather, I still don’t know what to expect this weekend. A podium result would be a nice way to thank V8 Racing and GP eXtreme for this great opportunity.”