Home Formula RegionalFRegional European Championship Taponen converts Hungaroring FREC pole to victory

Taponen converts Hungaroring FREC pole to victory

by Bethonie Waring

Photo: Dutch Photo Agency

Tuukka Taponen led from lights to flag ahead of a frantic battle for second in the opening Formula Regional European Championship race of the weekend at the Hungaroring.

Taponen was comfortably ahead of the field throughout the race, rarely less than a second ahead of team-mate Zachary David in P2. As the battle for the runner-up position tightened in the closing stages of the race, Taponen extended that gap to 3.142s to take his second win of the season.

David spent most of the race in second but came under pressure in the closing stages of the race. Brando Badoer got a poor start but managed to stay in third ahead of Enzo Deligny and Alessandro Giusti.

Late in the race, Badoer tried to find a way past David, sending them both side by side. Delegny joined the fight and was sent wide, which then allowed the two cars behind to also join the fight.

As Badoer battled to stay in third, David was able to pull away slightly, just edging out to a second ahead of the fight for third to take his second consecutive second-place finish.

A challenging qualifying had left Camara eighth on the grid, and the championship leader spent much of the race trying to get ahead of Enzo Giltaire. Giltaire fought well, but Camara eventually came through to take sixth and join the fight at the front of the field.

After the wide moment for Deligny, Camara moved up to fourth and was pushing Badoer hard on the final lap, only to run out of laps before he could attempt a move. Giusti finished fifth, ahead of Deligny and Giltaire.

Enzo Peugeot spent the entire race battling to stay ahead of James Wharton. On a number of occasions, Wharton was able to slip ahead, only for Peugeot to get back ahead by the end of the corner. The pair were separated by 0.384s at the chequered flag. Ugo Ugochukwu at times looked ready to take advantage of any mistake from the battling duo, but finished some three seconds back in 10th.

Race result (19 laps)
Pos Driver Team Time
1 Tuukka Taponen R-ace GP 32m30.547s
2 Zachary David R-ace GP +3.142s
3 Brando Badoer Van Amersfoort Racing +4.177s
4 Rafael Camara Prema +4.594s
5 Alessandro Giusti ART Grand Prix +5.288s
6 Enzo Deligny R-ace GP +7.377s
7 Evan Giltaire ART Grand Prix +8.051s
8 Enzo Peugeot Sainteloc Racing +9.794s
9 James Wharton Prema +10.178s
10 Ugo Ugochukwu Prema +13.400s
11 Ruiqi Liu Trident +13.841s
12 Ivan Domingues Van Amersfoort Racing +14.252s
13 Valerio Rinicella MP Motorsport +15.197s
14 Michael Belov Trident +15.522s
15 Niko Lacorte Trident +16.215s
16 Pedro Clerot Van Amersfoort Racing +17.973s
17 Kanato Le G4 Racing +18.404s
18 Theophile Nael Sainteloc Racing +19.234
19 Nikhil Bohra MP Motorsport +20.687s
20 Giovanni Maschio R-P-M +25.360s
21 Romain Andriolo G4 Racing +25.823s
22 Marta Garcia Iron Dames +26.459s
23 Edgar Pierre R-P-M +28.035s
24 Alex Sawer KIC Motorsport +28.794s
25 Yaroslav Veselaho ART Grand Prix +32.264s
26 Jesse Carrasquedo G4 Racing +33.299s
27 Nandhavud Bhirombhakdi KIC Motorsport +36.212s
28 Isaac Barashi MP Motorsport +40.988s
29 Matteo De Palo Sainteloc Racing +44.085s
Ret Noah Stromsted R-P-M
Ret Yujia Gao KIC Motorsport
Ret Lena Buhler ART Grand Prix
Fastest lap: Taponen, 1m41.854s

Championship standings
Camara 152   2 Taponen 88   3 Giusti 62   4 Badoer 61   5 Giltaire 49   6 Stromsted 42   7 David 37   8 Domingues 37   9 Deligny 35   10 Wharton 32