A year after becoming the first international event to be held at Moscow Raceway, the World Series by Renault returns to the Russian circuit on 22 and 23 June. The Formula Renault 3.5 Series, Eurocup Formula Renault 2.0 and Eurocup Megane Trophy drivers will all be out in force, with David Coulthard providing the star turn in the Infiniti Red Bull Racing F1 Show.
Moscow Raceway hosted the World Series by Renault as its inaugural event less than a year ago, and is already one of the hottest destinations on the Renault Sport Technologies race calendar. Since the venue opened, several other international events have followed Renault’s lead by staging events at the circuit.
Spectators can look forward to an even bigger and better programme this year, and a subtly modified track that promises to be even quicker than before. On-track demonstrations will keep the crowds entertained between races, with the Renault Sport Show and Renault Classic Show among the highlights. The star attraction, however, will be David Coulthard’s cameo at the wheel of the Formula 1 World Championship-winning car. For the first time at a World Series by Renault meeting, the Scot will be taking to the track with two drives per day in the Infiniti Red Bull Racing F1 Show.
In the Renault Village, visitors will have the chance to discover the Renault range through a host of different activities. They will be able to enjoy the Corridor of Time, with its Rally, Clio and Circuit sections, as well as the Alpine exhibition. They will also have the opportunity to drive in Michelin and Renault simulators, and take part in the Pit Stop Challenge. Photo booths, meanwhile, are among the new attractions in the paddock.
The World Series by Renault is a free event. Tickets are available to download at www.worldseriesbyrenault.com. For those unable to attend, both Formula Renault 3.5 Series will be shown live on Eurosport on Saturday 22 June and Sunday 23 June, from 12.00.
Formula Renault 3.5 Series : Title race still open as season reaches halfway stage
The Moscow Raceway round of the World Series by Renault marks the mid-point of the Formula Renault 3.5 Series. After seven races (out of 17), Kevin Magnussen (DAMS) holds a commanding lead in the championship. The Dane has finished on the podium five times, winning in Spain and Belgium, and has a 29-point advantage over Stoffel Vandoorne (Fortec Motorsports), who also has two wins to his name.
The McLaren Driver Development Programme pair, however, are by no means the only drivers to have impressed over the past three months. Antonio Felix da Costa (Arden Caterham), Nico Müller (International Draco Racing) and Carlos Huertas (Carlin) have all won races this season, and remain firmly in the hunt for the title.
Will Stevens (P1 by Strakka Racing), Arthur Pic (AV Formula), Sergey Sirotkin (ISR), Marco Sorensen (Lotus), Christopher Zanella (ISR) and Jazeman Jaafar (Carlin) have all appeared on the podium at least once in the first seven races, and are all still in contention in what is proving to be a very open title race.
Seven Russians will be in action, and they will all be hoping to shine on home soil. Sergey Sirotkin has been the strongest Russian performer since the start of the season, while 2010 Formula Renault 3.5 Series 2010 champion Mikhail Aleshin (Tech 1 Racing), Daniil Move (SMP Racing by Comtec) and Nikolay Martsenko (Pons Racing) all have the ability to mount a challenge.
Eurocup Formula Renault 2.0 : Championship lead up for grabs
Matthieu Vaxivière (Tech 1 Racing) produced an extraodrinary performance at Motorland Aragon, but his efforts were quickly scrubbed out by his rivals. At Spa-Francorchamps, the venue for the second round of the Eurocup Formula Renault 2.0 season, Oliver Rowland (Manor MP Motorsport) and Luca Ghiotto (Prema Powerteam) were the two victorious drivers. Pierre Gasly (Tech 1 Racing), however, sits top of the championship with the narrowest of leads, having shown great consistency to rack up three podium finishes from four races.
With four of the season’s 14 races already gone, nobody has taken a firm grip of the championship, with the top six drivers separated by just 13 points. A strong weekend in Russia for any of the frontrunners would stand them in good stead for the second half of the season.
Jake Dennis (Fortec Motorsports), currently third in the Eurocup Formula Renault 2.0, Oscar Tunjo (Josef Kaufmann Racing) and Esteban Ocon (ART Junior Team) are among the other names on a long list of drivers pushing for success in Russia.
Russia’s Egor Orudzhev will be hoping for a strong display in front of his home crowd. The Tech 1 Racing man finished on the podium at the season-opener in Spain, but left the following round in Belgium without a single point. His fellow Russians Roman Mavlanov (RC Formula), Konstantin Tereshchenko (Interwetten.com Racing) and Denis Korneev (Jenzer Motorsport), meanwhile, will also be hoping to use the home advantage to good effect.
Eurocup Megane Trophy : Catch Mirko Bortolotti if you can
Rookie Mirko Bortolotti (Oregon Racing 2) has a reputation for speed, and has enjoyed a near-perfect start to the Eurocup Megane Trophy season. The Italian won both races of the season-opener at Motorland Aragon, before picking up a further victory at Spa-Francorchamps in the following round.
In Belgium, however, he was outscored by Mike Verschuur (McGregor by Equipe Verschuur). The Dutchman took victory on Saturday and finished second on Sunday, and in doing so moved up to second in the championship standings. The 2009 Eurocup Megane Trophy champion, at this stage, appears best placed to halt Bortolotti’s charge.
Several other drivers, however, will be gunning for victory in Russia. Having already finished on the podium this season, Max Braams (Las Moras by Equipe Verschuur), Kevin Gilardoni (Oregon Team 2), Kelvin Snoeks (Oregon Team 3) and Erik Janis (Gravity Charouz) all have the chance to go a step further and record important wins.
Two Russians are in the field, with Vladimir Lunkin (Oregon Team 3), currently eighth in the overall standings, the man to watch. Lunkin finished fourth in race two at Spa-Francorchamps, a performance that gave a glimpse of his potential. His compatriot, Roman Golikov (Oregon Team 2), will also be keen to make an impression.