21/10/2012

Saturday Analysis

We've been pretty quiet in the run-up to this weekend, but actually there are two series having their final races of the season.

Volkswagen Scirocco R-Cup

Oshan Kothadiya was in action for the final time in his debut season of this predominately German-based series. Actually, their race programme this weekend is finished, here are the results from Hockenheim, Germany.

Practice One Result: Kothadiya 16th (1:58.472).
Qualifying Result: Kothadiya 22nd (1:58,510).
Race Result: Kothadiya 16th (10 points).

The 10 points scored by Oshan this weekend means that the Indian driver met his pre-race target of keeping 20th place in the championship:

Drivers championship (18th-21st)
18) Mikaela Åhlin-Kottulinsky (82 pts)
19) Matthias Bäurle (82)
20) Oshan Kothadiya (76)
21) Patrick Eisemann (72)

Oshan has shown an odd glimpse of pace this season. It will be interesting to see if he remains in the series for 2013, and if he does, how much he develops in his second season.

Formula Renault 3.5

The major action this weekend comes from Jules Bianchi (Sahara Force India's reserve driver). Heading into the final title-deciding weekend, Jules was at the top of the pile:

Drivers' Championship (1st-3rd):
1) Jules Bianchi (179 pts)
2) Robin Frijns (174)
3) Sam Bird (155)

There are two races on the schedule this time out at the Circuit de Catalunya, Spain - one of which has already been completed. Here are all the results:

Test One: Bianchi 8th (1:53.097, +1.136s gap to leader).
Test Two: Bianchi 7th (1:31.238, +0.502s).
Qualifying One: Bianchi 1st (1:29.986).
Race One: Bianchi 7th (6 points).

A great qualifying session saw Jules start the race from pole. He was the only man to break into the 1:29's - so far, so good! It is worth noting that championship rival, Robin Frijns, qualified 6th.

Sadly, a poor start for Jules saw him drop down to 5th place at the start of the race. What made it worse is that Robin Frijns got past Jules!

3rd, 4th & 5th (Frijns, Magnussen and Bianchi) were running very close together for a large portion of the race but no passes could be made. On the final lap, Jules tried a risky lunge up the inside of Kevin Magnussen. It didn't work out and both cars spun round. They did both manage to get going again, but Jules had now dropped to 7th - that's where he would finish. Frijns finished 3rd. It was a pretty hasty move by Jules in his desperation; it could prove to be a costly mistake.

With race two & qualifying two coming tomorrow, it's all change in the championship:

Drivers' Championship (1st-3rd):
1) Robin Frijns (189 pts)
2) Jules Bianchi (185 pts)
3) Sam Bird (173)

Jules has dropped down to second place - he now HAS to finish tomorrows race ahead of Robin Frijns to have a shot at the title. It's going to be a very exciting showdown!

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