A genuine landmark of international motorsport, Circuit de Spa-Francorchamps is ready to host round nine of Clio Cup Europe. On this tricky and challenging track, several drivers will aim for maximum points in the various title battles ahead of the summer break.
Over the years, the venue for the Belgian Grand Prix has consistently rewarded draft management, race craft and adaptation to unpredictable weather conditions... So many variables that could prove pivotal to take the psychological upper hand in the various Clio Cup Europe categories before the final push this fall!
Title race back on the boil
While the start of the season was paced by the duel between Nicolas Milan (Milan Compétition) and David Pouget (GPA Racing), the race for the title has seen a new contender emerge with the rise of Marc Guillot (Milan Compétition). In Belgium, the three Frenchmen will aim to be on top of the Clio Cup Europe before the summer break. However, there is still a long way to go before other contenders will be eliminated as Anthony Jurado (Milan Compétition) and Thibaut Bossy (TB2S) will intend to prove it by catching up to the leaders.
The Challengers in the spotlight?
Kévin Jimenez (GPA Racing) leads the group of chasers. Despite a disappointing weekend at Imola, the Toulouse native still has a commanding lead in the Challengers Cup and will be keen to take the fight to Alexandre Albouy (GPA Racing), who took a brace of category wins this past weekend in Italy.
The category promises to animate the action in the field with the return of Jerzy Spinkewicz (Uniq Racing), Paul Cocaign (TB2S), Guillaume Maio (GM Sport) and Nicolas Abella (Chefo Sport), all of whom are determined to shake up the hierarchy while Henrik Seibel (Panther Motorsport) and Mariano Alonso (GPA Racing) want to demonstrate the progress they have each made with a solid result.
There will be a new driver to keep a close eye on his first appearance of the season at Spa. Jaap van Lagen (Chefo Sport) raced in the Formula Renault 3.5 Series before winning the 2006 Eurocup Mégane Trophy and the former factory Lada driver in the FIA WTCC will try to use his vast experience to spring a surprise in his maiden weekend with the fifth-generation Clio Cup!
Gentlemen Drivers super-motivated
After reducing the gap to Laurent Dziadus last week at Imola, Horn (GPA Racing) will try to dislodge his rival from the top of the Gentlemen Drivers Cup but the Frenchman will have to battle rivals who will look to score as many points as they can ahead of the summer pause.
Among them is Stephan Polderman (Chefo Sport). The Dutchman will look to continue his ascent into the top ten while his teammate René Steenmetz (Chefo Sport) will give his all to break into it. Meanwhile, Michel Faye (GM Sport) and Gabriel Alonso (GPA Racing) will aim for a solid result to get back into contention before the final stretch of the calendar.
Group C reaches the midway point of the season
After the season-opening rounds at Hockenheim and the Hungaroring, Marc Guillot has a six-point lead over Tomáš Pekař (Carpek Services). The two will continue their battle while also hoping to mix it up with the top European contenders to score maximum points. They will have to be wary of Thibaut Bossy and Andreas Stucki (Stucki Motorsport), who have been gradually gaining momentum from one meeting to the next.
Jerzy Spinkiewicz will also try to join the battle, but the Pole will have to control Paul Cocaign’s ambitions in the Challengers category. Meanwhile, Mariano Alonso and Henrik Seibel will look to narrow the gap to the leader to keep their chances alive before the final rounds at the Red Bull Ring and Monza.
The two races will be broadcast live on the Renault Sport Series Facebook page and the Renault Sport YouTube channel at 15h00 on Friday and 10h20 on Saturday, as part of the prestigious 24 Hours of Spa weekend.
Thursday 29 July
9h00-9h30: Collective test
15h10-15h30: Qualifying 1
Friday 30 July
10h00-10h20: Qualifying 2
15h00-15h30: Race 1 (25 minutes + 1 lap)
Saturday 31 July
10h20-10h50: Race 2 (25 minutes + 1 lap)
2021 Clio Cup Europe calendar
2-5 April: Nogaro - Group B
30 April-2 May: Monza - Group A
7-9 May: Magny-Cours - Groups B & D
14-16 May: Hockenheim - Groups B & C
4-6 June: Misano - Group A
18-20 June: Le Castellet - Groups B & D
9-11 July: Hungaroring - Groups A & C
23-25 July: Imola - Group A
28-31 July: Spa-Francorchamps - Group C
10-12 September: Red Bull Ring - Groups A & C
17-19 September: Valencia - Group D
1-3 October: Le Castellet - Group B
29-31 October: Monza - Groups A & C
12-14 November: Barcelona - Groups B & D