Sasahara beats Hughes for maiden Eurocup victory

Ukyo Sasahara took his maiden Eurocup Formula Renault 2.0 Series victory in race one at Spa-Francorchamps as he jumped pole sitter Jake Hughes at the start and held on until the chequered flag.

The Japanese ART Junior Team driver took the flag just 0.715s ahead of Koiranen GP’s Hughes, while Anthoine Hubert of Tech 1 Racing completed the podium.

An incident early in the race between Valentin Hasse-Clot and Henrique Chaves, who race for Manor MP Motorsport and AVF respectively, brought out the safety car, but Sasahara was able to control the restart.

After starting from third on the grid, Jack Aitken’s hopes of taking his first victory of the season were wrecked by a gradually worsening car issue, with the young Briton’s race ending in the pit lane after dropping down the field.

This enabled championship leader Louis Deletraz to be able to finish fourth for Josef Kaufmann Racing, ahead of Manor MP Motorsport’s Ignazio D’Agosto and JD Motorsport’s Mateovos Isaakyan, with the Italian and Russian drivers battling hard with Fortec Motorsports’ Ben Barnicoat before the Racing Steps Foundation-backed Briton retired on the final lap.

Callan O’Keeffe therefore was the highest placed Fortec driver at the end, crossing the line in seventh position, ahead of Brazilian driver Thiago Vivacqua of JD Motorsport in eighth.

Wildcard entry Max Defourny was ninth for the ART Junior Team ahead of Manor MP Motorsport’s Dennis Olsen, while Darius Oskoui takes the final point for the ART Junior Team despite finishing outside the points in eleventh, with Defourney ineligible for points as a guest driver.

There were a number of incidents during the race, with Hugo de Sadeleer and Josef Zaruba colliding at the final chicane, Simon Gachet of Tech 1 Racing hitting the wall at Raidillon, and Ferdinand Habsberg joining his Fortec team-mate Barnicoat in retiring on the final lap whilst chasing a point.

Spa-Francorchamps Race 1 Result

19Ukyo SasaharaJAPART Junior Team28m58.036s
22Jake HughesGBRKoiranen GP+0.715s
322Anthoine HubertFRATech 1 Racing+3.449s
414Louis DeletrazSWIJosef Kaufmann Racing+6.101s
519Ignazio D'AgostoITAManor MP Motorsport+10.159s
635Matevos IsaakyanRUSJD Motorsport+10.737s
77Callan O'KeeffeRSAFortec Motorsports+18.193s
836Thiago VivacquaBRZJD Motorsport+20.139s
949Max DefournyBELART Junior Team+20.884s
1017Dennis OlsenNORManor MP Motorsport+22.449s
1110Darius OskouiSWIART Junior Team+24.229s
1227Harrison ScottGBRAVF+24.358s
1315Kevin JorgSWIJosef Kaufmann Racing+24.758s
1425Amaury RichardFRAARTA Engineering+29.130s
1518Lasse SorensenDENManor MP Motorsport+29.638s
1643Philip HamprechtGERKoiranen GP+30.351s
178Luke ChudleighCANFortec Motorsports+31.081s
1837Amaury BonduelFRAJD Motorsport+31.587s
195Martin KodricCROFortec Motorsports+31.805s
2048Daniel PronenkoUKRBVM Racing+32.755s
2126James AllenAUSARTA Engineering+33.923s
2228Charlie EastwoodIRLAVF+34.706s
2340Bruno BaptistaBRZKoiranen GP+39.554s
2447Nikita MazepinRUSJosef Kaufmann Racing+41.853s
256Ben BarnicoatGBRFortec Motorsports+1 Lap
2645Ferdinand HabsburgAUTFortec Motorsports+1 Lap
273Jack AitkenGBRKoiranen GP
2821Simon GachetFRATech 1 Racing
291Anton de PasqualeAUSKoiranen GP
3020Hugo de SadeleerSWITech 1 Racing
3150Josef ZarubaCZEAVF
3244Stefan RienerAUTKoiranen GP
3346Valentin Hasse-ClotFRAManor MP Motorsport
3442Henrique ChavesPORAVF