Photo: Chris Schotanus/Essay Produkties
Carlos Sainz Jr. has wrapped up the Formula Renault North European Cup title with one weekend remaining after one win and two second places at Most in the Czech Republic…
Having scored ten wins from 17 races so far in the NEC, the Spaniard has single himself out as one of the stars of the future. He follows in the footsteps of the likes of Valtteri Bottas and Antonio Felix da Costa by winning the series, which was created for 2006 as a merger of the Dutch and German series. Sainz came up againgst some of the strongest Formula Renault drivers, with fellow Red Bull Junior Daniil Kvyat having been his nearest rival. But whereas Sainz has only finished off the podium once all season, Kvyat has failed to make the top three on seven occasions.
Sainz could still claim a double title in Formula Renault, as he is in contention for the Eurocup. However, a couple of disappointing weekends at the last two rounds has allowed Robin Frijns to open up a healthy lead over him in the standings.
As for the future, Red Bull has a habit of placing its Formula Renault drivers into British F3 with the Carlin team. Jaime Alguersuari, Daniel Ricciardo and Jean-Eric Vergne took three straight British F3 titles for the energy company between 2008 and 2010, and Sainz could well follow them into the series in 2012. On this form he would begin as one of the favourites. He only turns 17 on Thursday.