Home Featured PaddockScout Weekend Roundup: 8-9 October

PaddockScout Weekend Roundup: 8-9 October

by Peter Allen

Photo: World Series by Renault/DPPI

The Formula Renault 3.5 Series title battle is settled at the season finale at Catalunya, and the British Formula 3 season concludes at Silverstone…

The battle between Carlin teammates Robert Wickens and Jean-Eric Vergne for the Formula Renault 3.5 crown has managed to capture the attention of the Formula 1 freternity this year, and the destination of the title was finally decided at Catalunya this weekend.

Wickens came into the weekend with just a two point advantage over Vergne, but things swung further his way in qualifying. While the Canadian took his seventh pole of the season, Vergne could only manage ninth place.

Wickens did what he had to do in the race, dominating proceedings and winning by 21 seconds. The story of the race though was Vergne fighting his way through into second place, to limit the damage done and keep the gap between the two at a manageable nine points going into Sunday’s finale. Russian driver Daniil Move completed the podium in third ahead of Alexander Rossi, Sergio Canamasas and Nick Yelloly.

Albert Costa took pole for Sunday’s race, with Wickens lining up alongside him on the front row and Vergne back in fifth. Costa converted his pole position into a maiden win on home soil, while both Wickens and Vergne retired. They made contact on the opening lap that broke Wickens’ suspension, with Vergne slipping down the order until being hit by Fairuz Fauzy. All this meant that Wickens became champion. Yelloly finished the race in second place behind Costa, with Brendon Hartley third.

Final Formula Renault 3.5 Series standings after 9 rounds:

1. Robert Wickens, 241 points (+ 25 points)
2. Jean-Eric Vergne, 232 (+ 18 )
3. Alexander Rossi, 156 (+ 18 )
4. Albert Costa, 151 (+ 25)
5. Daniel Ricciardo, 144 (Absent)
6. Kevin Korjus, 120 (+ 0)

The Eurocup Formula Renault 2.0 season also concluded at Catalunya, with the title having already been decided in favour of Robin Frijns last time out. Defeated rival Carlos Sainz Jr was out for some revenge on home soil, and took pole for the first race. However, it would be fellow Spaniard Javier Tarancon who would score a first win in the series, one week after clinching the Formula Renault Alps title. Sainz was second, with Red Bull teammate Daniil Kvyat storming through from 18th on the grid to complete the podium.

The second race saw further home glory when Alex Riberas also scored his maiden win, from pole position. Sainz was second again, with Norman Nato in third.

Final Eurocup Formula Renault 2.0 standings after 7 rounds:

1. Robin Frijns, 245 points (+ 22 points)
2. Carlos Sainz Jr, 200 (+ 26)
3. Daniil Kvyat, 155 (+ 15)
4. Will Stevens, 116 (+ 12)
5. Stoffel Vandoorne, 93 (+ 18 )
6. Alex Riberas, 82 (+ 25)

Tarancon was one of two Spaniard's to score their first Eurocup win on home soil at Catalunya. Photo: World Series by Renault

The season finale of the British Formula 3 season took place at Silverstone, where the focus was on the battle for the runner-up spot behind champion Felipe Nasr. Carlos Huertas held the position coming into the weekend, but had just one point over Carlin teammmate Kevin Magnussen. Magnussen claimed first blood with victory in the first race ahead of Scott Pye and Nasr. Huertas meanwhile could only finish seventh.

Race two saw guest driver Alexander Sims take victory, ahead of Brazilians Lucas Foresti and Pietro Fantin. Magnussen and Huertas finished eighth and ninth respectively.

Magnussen began the third race from pole but was beaten off the line by Huertas, and the Colombian finally went on to take his first win in the category at the end of his third year of trying. Second was enough for Magnussen to take the runner-up spot in the points, while Rupert Svendsen-Cook took the final podium spot in the season finale.

Final British Formula Three standings after 10 rounds:

1. Felipe Nasr, 318 points (+ 16 points)
2. Kevin Magnussen, 237 (+ 42)
3. Carlos Huertas, 222 (+ 26)
4. Will Buller, 197 (+ 14)
5. Rupert Svendsen-Cook, 191 (+ 12)
6. Jazeman Jaafar, 187 (+ 12)

The British Formula Ford season also came to an end at Silverstone. Australian Geoff Uhrhane won the first race, while already-crowned champion Scott Malvern took his 18th and final win of the year in the second. Dutchman Jeroen Slaghekke won the third and final race, clinching him the runner-up spot overall ahead of Nick McBride.

PaddockScout Driver of the Weekend: Albert Costa – Spaniard finally took an FR3.5 win at the final race of his second season, having been at the head of the timesheets throughout the weekend on home soil. Could be crucial as he tries to raise the funding for future seasons.