Shwartzman Takes Race 1 Honours, Palmer Retains Title Chance in Second

Credit: Eric Vargiolu / DPPI

Robert Shwartzwan took a dominant lights-to-flag victory in race one of the final weekend of the Eurocup Formula Renault 2.0 Championship at the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya on Saturday, while Will Palmer ensured the title battle will go down to the final day of the season with second place.

However R-ace GP may rue not allowing Palmer to pass Shwartzman and collect the seven additional points towards the championship, meaning Sacha Fenestraz now only needs an eighth place finish in race two on Sunday morning to clinch the title.

Shwartzman, who earlier this week became the latest member of the Ferrari Driver Academy, had taken pole position earlier in the day, and the young Russian made a good start to defend his position from Palmer heading into turn one, while Gabriel Aubry managed to squeeze ahead of Fenestraz into third.

The battle for the race win soon became a stroll in the park for Shwartzman, who was able to edge away from his team-mate, and brought his car home for his fifth win of the season, winning by 3.273 seconds from Palmer, who in turn was more than five seconds ahead of Tech 1 Racing’s Aubry at the chequered flag.

Fenestraz, the winner of three of the previous races in the championship, was left to fight for fourth place, and the French-Argentine driver managed to withstand pressure from Max Defourny and Richard Verschoor to claim the place.

Defourny however saw fifth place disappear on the final lap, with the R-ace GP driver passed into turn one by MP Motorsport’s Verschoor, who had one of his strongest performances of the season following changes to his car between Friday’s practice sessions and Saturday’s Qualifying.

Verschoor’s team-mate and fellow Red Bull Junior Neil Verhagen showed that MP Motorsport had a strong car on Saturday by claiming seventh, whilst guest drivers Logan Sargeant and Charles Milesi finished eighth and ninth for R-ace GP ahead of their team-mate Raul Guzman, while Thomas Randle and Aleksandr Vartanyan claimed the final points.

Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya Race 1 Result

110Robert ShwartzmanRUSR-ace GP27:51.529s
28Will PalmerGBRR-ace GP+3.273s
34Gabriel AubryFRATech 1 Racing+8.485s
411Sacha FenestrazFRAJosef Kaufmann Racing+10.394s
529Richard VerschoorNEDMP Motorsport+11.448s
69Max DefournyBELR-ace GP+12.909s
731Neil VerhagenUSAMP Motorsport+14.890s
843Logan SargeantUSAR-ace GP+18.878s
940Charles MilesiFRAR-ace GP+19.297s
1012Raul GuzmanMEXR-ace GP+22.040s
1116Thomas RandleAUSAVF by Adrian Valles+22.590s
1223Aleksandr VartanyanRUSJD Motorsport+23.275s
1313Henrique ChavesPORAVF by Adrian Valles+23.681s
141Yifei YeCHNJosef Kaufmann Racing+25.071s
155Thomas MaxwellAUSTech 1 Racing+25.292s
1615Axel MatusMEXAVF by Adrian Valles+29.729s
1793Zane GoddardAUSArden Motorsport+30.076s
1830Jarno OpmeerNEDMP Motorsport+31.242s
1918Aleksey KorneevRUSFortec Motorsports+31.411s
2017Alex PeroniAUSFortec Motorsports+31.780s
2114Xavier LloverasESPAVF by Adrian Valles+35.264s
2233Daniel TicktumGBRArden Motorsport+36.170s
2322Jean Baptiste SimmenauerFRAJD Motorsport+39.256s
2426Presley MartonoINOMark Burdett Motorsport+42.098s
2534Ghislain CordeelBELArden Motorsport+44.204s
2619Frank BirdGBRFortec Motorsports+44.676s
2721Sun Yue YangCHNJD Motorsport+44.733s
2820Najiy Ayyad bin Abd RazakMALFortec Motorsports+52.385s
2925Julia PankiewiczPOLMark Burdett Motorsport+52.678s
302Luis LeedsAUSJosef Kaufmann Racing+52.764s
RET7Max FewtrellGBRTech 1 RacingRetired
RET6Thomas NeubauerFRATech 1 RacingRetired