Following a short night to repair the car of Reshad De Gerus, Arden Motorsport enjoyed a happy ending at Spa with a one-two finish. Starting 12th on the grid, rookie Alex Quinn made a perfect tyre call to take his maiden win in the Formula Renault Eurocup ahead of team-mate Ugo de Wilde and Grégoire Saucy (ART Grand Prix).
On Thursday, Victor Martins (ART Grand Prix) got the upper hand in a hard-fought qualifying session with a best time of 2:16.319s to lead the way ahead of Franco Colapinto (MP Motorsport) and Caio Collet (R-ace GP). Local drivers Amaury Cordeel (FA Racing) and Ugo de Wilde completed the top five.
The drivers faced radically different conditions Saturday morning. Confronted with a proper dilemma between a wet track surface and no rain expected, the top four opted for slicks while Ugo de Wilde went with wet tyres.
Hankook’s grooved tyres looked to be the right call. When the lights went out, Ugo de Wilde picked up three positions at La Source before making a move on Victor Martins to take the lead. Also on wet rubber, Alex Quinn and William Alatalo (JD Motorsport) saw their respective gambles pay off as they were soon in the top three.
On lap five, Alex Quinn found his way past team-mate Ugo de Wilde. Meanwhile, William Alatalo was busy fighting off those behind. The epic battle among David Vidales (JD Motorsport), Kas Haverkort (MP Motorsport), Tijmen van der Helm (FA Racing) and Grégoire Saucy went the way of the Swiss driver, who then got the better of the Finn on lap seven.
Continuing to build his lead on a drying track, Alex Quinn went on for the win with a nearly 12-second gap to Ugo de Wilde, who made it two podium results this weekend at his home round, while Grégoire Saucy completed the roster.
After dropping to eighth place, Victor Martins finished just off the podium, but ahead of wild-card entry Kas Haverkort, who took his third consecutive top five result. Caio Collet also came on strong late in the race to claim the fastest lap and take sixth place from Tijmen van der Helm as László Tóth (Bhaitech Racing), William Alatalo and Amaury Cordeel all looked on. Still recovering from a broken leg during the summer break, Nicola Marinangeli (Bhaitech Racing) scored his first point of the season.
Victor Martins extends his lead from Caio Collet in the general classification to 23 points while David Vidales, Franco Colapinto and Alex Quinn remain in contention for the title. With the win, Alex Quinn is also just a few points behind David Vidales In the rookie classification.
The Formula Renault Eurocup next heads to Imola where it will serve as the curtain raiser to the Formula 1 Emilia Romagna Grand Prix (October 31st to November 1st).
Alex Quinn (Arden Motorsport): "It’s hard to find the right words... I hadn’t won since Formula 4. I’ve been on the podium several times, but it’s so different when you win! The team was incredible. They only slept three hours last night to repair Reshad’s car. They deserve this victory more than anyone else. We made the right tyre choice but we were also extremely fast compared to the other drivers who started on the rain tyres. I am delighted that our work and gamble paid off!"
Ugo de Wilde (Arden Motorsport): "You are always a bit disappointed when you lead a few laps, but Alex had incredible pace. I have to analyse what happened, but I had an issue with my brake bias because of a faulty sensor. The results this weekend are still very good. I wasn’t very confident at the start when I saw the four drivers in front of me on slicks and the track drying out during the installation lap, but this gave me more grip when the lights went out and I was able to take the lead. The team showed once again that they are there and that they are making the right choices! "
Grégoire Saucy (ART Grand Prix): "The rain tyres were the right choice and I would like to thank the team for this decision because I started from 13th on the grid. I was extremely careful at the start and with my first overtakes, because I knew that the race wasn’t going to be decided in the opening laps. After that, I wanted to drive as much as possible in the water in order to preserve my tyres and this paid off despite the fact that Victor came back late in the race with the slicks. I held on and I think we can head to Imola with confidence!"
|1. Victor Martins (ART Grand Prix)||247|
|2. Caio Collet (R-ace GP)||224|
|3. David Vidales (JD Motorsport)||143|
|4. Franco Colapinto (MP Motorsport)||126.5|
|5. Alex Quinn (Arden Motorsport)||106|
*Results subject to confirmation following technical and sporting checks.