Franco Colapinto took his second Formula Regional European Championship by Alpine win in three races as the Argentine racer fended off the race-long challenge from David Vidales to win race one in Valencia on Saturday.
The MP Motorsport driver, who took the chequered flag first in both races at the Red Bull Ring two weeks ago only to have the second victory taken away from him due to a penalty for exceeding track limits, took pole position for race one at the Circuit Ricardo Tormo, and he held onto the lead at the start.
Vidales, racing for Prema Powerteam, stayed on Colapinto’s tail throughout the race and was never more than a second behind his rival, but the Spaniard was never close enough to make a genuine attempt to take the lead.
Completing the podium was Van Amersfoort Racing’s Mari Boya, who had by far his best finish of the season, with the Spaniard’s previous best being a fifth place in the first race of the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya weekend back in May.
Prema’s Paul Aron made a first lap move on G4 Racing’s Michael Belov to give him fourth place ahead of the Russian, while Arden Motorsport’s Alex Quinn was sixth ahead of R-ace GP duo Hadrien David and Zane Maloney as overtaking proved difficult around the tight Valencia track.
Maloney made some early gains as he moved up four places from his starting position on the opening lap, while a third R-ace GP car of Isack Hadjar was ninth, just ahead of Prema’s Dino Beganovic, who took the final point on offer in tenth.
Championship leader Grégoire Saucy endured a difficult day, with the ART Grand Prix driver dropping out of the points on the opening lap and ending twelfth overall, just behind FA Racing’s Gabriel Bortoleto.
Series debutant Dilano van’t Hoff, racing as a guest driver this weekend for MP Motorsport, finished a credible twentieth out of thirty-two finishers, with Patrik Pasma and Alexandre Bardinon the only two drivers not to see the chequered flag.
Saucy remains the favourite for the title despite failing to score points for only the fourth time in 2021, with the Swiss racer still seventy-four points clear of David with only one hundred and twenty-five available across the remaining five races of the year.
Circuit Ricardo Tormo Race 1 Result
|1||43||Franco Colapinto||ARG||MP Motorsport||21 Laps|
|2||12||David Vidales||ESP||Prema Powerteam||+0.417|
|3||64||Mari Boya||ESP||Van Amersfoort Racing||+4.092|
|4||1||Paul Aron||EST||Prema Powerteam||+6.049|
|5||30||Michael Belov||RUS||G4 Racing||+10.817|
|6||21||Alex Quinn||GBR||Arden Motorsport||+12.427|
|7||10||Hadrien David||FRA||R-ace GP||+14.479|
|8||22||Zane Maloney||BAR||R-ace GP||+16.680|
|9||6||Isack Hadjar||FRA||R-ace GP||+17.191|
|10||17||Dino Beganovic||SWE||Prema Powerteam||+17.605|
|11||85||Gabriel Bortoleto||BRZ||FA Racing||+19.114|
|12||26||Grégoire Saucy||CHE||ART Grand Prix||+20.632|
|13||8||William Alatalo||FIN||Arden Motorsport||+23.033|
|14||46||Gabriele Mini||ITA||ART Grand Prix||+25.285|
|15||27||Kas Haverkort||NED||MP Motorsport||+25.818|
|16||35||Pietro Delli Guanti||ITA||Monolite Racing||+27.780|
|17||91||Eduardo Barrichello||BRZ||JD Motorsport||+28.568|
|18||51||Francesco Pizzi||ITA||Van Amersfoort Racing||+31.238|
|19||62||Lorenzo Fluxá||ESP||Van Amersfoort Racing||+31.673|
|20||77||Dilano van’t Hoff||NED||MP Motorsport||+32.182|
|21||16||Tommy Smith||AUS||JD Motorsport||+34.654|
|22||11||Gianluca Petecof||BRZ||KIC Motorsport||+35.852|
|23||96||Oliver Gøthe||DEN||MP Motorsport||+39.268|
|24||99||José Garfias||MEX||Monolite Racing||+40.501|
|25||41||Emidio Pesce||ITA||DR Formula||+43.553|
|26||19||Andrea Rosso||ITA||FA Racing||+45.405|
|27||7||Axel Gnos||CHE||G4 Racing||+45.789|
|28||2||Nico Göhler||GER||KIC Motorsport||+46.233|
|29||72||Bélen Garcia||ESP||G4 Racing||+54.028|
|30||15||Léna Bühler||CHE||R-ace GP||+54.719|
|31||14||Nicola Marinangeli||ITA||Arden Motorsport||+54.830|
|32||13||Jasin Ferati||CHE||KIC Motorsport||+1:45.864|
|RET||5||Patrik Pasma||FIN||ART Grand Prix||Retired|
|RET||9||Alexandre Bardinon||FRA||FA Racing||Retired|