Held this weekend in support of the Formula 1 German Grand Prix, the second Clio Cup Open of the year promises to live up to all its promise with an even more competitive field on a legendary circuit: the Hockenheimring!
Following the hugely popular Clio Cup Open on and off-track last month at Castellet, Renault Sport Racing is back at it this week during the running of the German Grand Prix. Once again, the competitors from the various Clio Cups have accepted the challenge in large number to compete in this exceptional setting where they will perform before the global motor racing elite!
A Grand Slam for Jack Young?
After dominating both races with a more than 20-second margin of victory each time in France, Jack Young (Eddie Stobart Racing) is aiming for another sweep in Germany. The Briton, however, knows that he has created great expectations and that the revolt has begun in the Clio Cup UK, for example, where he has lost the lead of the general classification.
Among his rivals, David Pouget (GPA Racing) and Ben Colburn (West Bourne Motorsport) are out for revenge after having to settle for the podium at Castellet. The French driver is the man on form at the moment with three wins at Lédenon and Barcelona that have allowed him to get back in the Clio Cup France title race!
Ben Colburn isn’t the only subject of her Majesty with ambitions. Twice second in qualifying, Brett Lidsey (MRM) is also looking to retake the advantage from his countryman and team mate. The ranks of the British team expand with the arrival of Tyler Lidsey, his younger brother who has been competing in the BARC Michelin Clio Cup Series.
The locals are up to the challenge!
At their home circuit, or nearly so on the Hockenheim track, the Clio Cup Central Europe drivers are also preparing to stand in the way of Jack Young.
In the top five at Castellet, Switzerland’s Andreas Stucki (Ecurie Basilisk) and Poland’s Albert Legutko are tough contenders, especially since the latter scored two podium finishes at Hockenheim last year. He was beaten by fellow Pole Karol Urbaniak (BM Racing Team), who could be one of the more serious contenders for victory this weekend!
Polish rookie Szymon Jabloński (BM Racing Team), Swiss driver Daniel Nyffeler (Equipe Bernoise) as well as the German pair of Marius Rauer (Team Bleekemolen) and Kevin Landwehr (ADAC Team Weser-EMS e.V) also want to demonstrate their skills at this event that will mark the return of Alf Ahrens (Ahrens Racing Team). The former standout in the Clio Cup Bohemia has chosen to get back behind the wheel at a circuit where he starred in the former generation of the Clio Cup!
New surprises in sight?
Every competitor has a chance to win in the Clio Cup, especially when they made a strong debut last month in support of the French Grand Prix. Top ten finisher Guillaume Plubel (GPA Racing) and his team mate Tom Piallat can benefit from the experience of David Pouget and Kevin Jimenez to accelerate their learning process and claim an even better result.
Meanwhile, drivers such as James Colburn (West Bourne Motorsport), Aaron Thompson (West Bourne Motorsport), Luke Warr (Specialzed), James Ross (Bob Ross Motorsport) and Saetta McQueen (Team MC Motortecnica) return with greater ambitions to put in a strong showing for their respective teams that compete in Clio Cup UK, Spain and Italy.
Usually in the Gentleman category in Clio Cup France, Samuel Chaligne (SC Sport) has also decided to take part in this second Clio Cup Open to gauge the competition, as will Veenesh Shunker, who will team with 2017 Clio Cup Central Europe title winner Thomas Pekar (Carpek Service) from the Czech Republic.
As the motor racing elite watch on and the spectators eager for a show, the Clio Cup Open competitors will have another chance to make Clio Cup history during a weekend where the format will be identical to that of Castellet. After just one free-practice session on Friday, they will battle in a 30-minute qualifying session where the two best times of each driver will set the grid for the races scheduled for Saturday at 18:00 and Sunday at 9:30.
Friday 26 July
18:05-18:35: Free Practice
Saturday 27 July
18:00-18:30: Race 1
Sunday 28 July
9:30-10:00: Race 2