As has been the case every year since 2016, the Formula Renault Eurocup will act as a curtain raiser for a Formula 1 Grand Prix. For the eighth of ten rounds this season, the field will meet up at Imola as the motor racing elite watch on during the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix weekend.
Although the Autodromo Enzo e Dino Ferrari had only been on the calendar twice since 2000, the Italian track will host the Formula Renault Eurocup for the second time this year. While most of the drivers have already gotten to know the high-speed bends, fearsome chicanes and massive braking zones at Imola in July, the young hopefuls will now have to manage the pressure of competing alongside the pinnacle of world motorsport!
Five for one title
Leader of the general classification, Victor Martins (ART Grand Prix) had a mix of fortune at Spa-Francorchamps as he equalled the single-season pole position record before seeing his streak of nine consecutive podium-finishes snapped. The Frenchman did however extend his lead to 23 points from Caio Collet (R-ace GP).
Fourth in both races at the first visit to Imola, Victor Martins will aim to pull even further away from his main rival. Podium-free in Belgium, the Brazilian driver of the Renault Sport Academy will be very keen to bounce back under the watchful eyes of the Renault DP World F1 Team and will be able to draw on experience gained in July.
Both, however, will have to pay close attention to David Vidales (JD Motorsport). Although he went scoreless for the first time this season at the last race, the Spaniard returns to the track where he took an historic brace of victories in his single-seater debut and will be determined to do it again to take a first step towards the rookie title.
Winners at Spa-Francorchamps, Franco Colapinto (MP Motorsport) and Alex Quinn (Arden Motorsport) would like to validate their return to form. Still in contention for the title, both drivers will look to make up ground to the leaders while also allowing their respective teams to continue their comeback in this run to season’s end.
Like each year, the Formula Renault Eurocup features an extremely competitive field as five drivers from five different teams have already scored a race win in 2020.
Consistently in the points and coming off his second podium finish, Grégoire Saucy (ART Grand Prix) will set his sights even higher to catch up to the top five. Now sixth in the general classification, the Swiss driver will, however, have to be wary of William Alatalo (JD Motorsport), who holds the category track record after his pole and two podium results this summer at Imola.
After hid shortened weekend in Spa, Lorenzo Colombo (Bhaitech Racing) will race at his home circuit and will try to add his name and his team to the list of winners to distance himself from Ugo de Wilde (Arden Motorsport), who has been on a tear of late with three podium finishes in the last four races.
A coveted top ten
La concurrence sera toutefois féroce puisque Tijmen van der Helm (FA Racing), Paul Aron (ART Grand Prix) et Amaury Cordeel (FA Racing) ou encore László Tóth (Bhaitech Racing) voudront aussi briller en Italie.
De leur côté, Nicola Marinangeli (Bhaitech Racing) et Reshad De Gerus (Arden Motorsport) partiront chasser de nouveaux points après avoir ouvert leurs compteurs respectifs lors des dernières épreuves.
Actuellement sixième du Championnat de Grande-Bretagne de F4, la jeune pilote britannique Abbi Pulling (FA Racing) profitera de ce rendez-vous prestigieux pour découvrir la Formule Renault FR-19 et la Formule Renault Eurocup. En parallèle, Michael Belov reprendra son programme dans la catégorie en rejoignant R-ace GP après s’être essayé au Championnat FIA de Formule 3 tandis que Petr Ptáček complètera le trio de l’équipe MP Motorsport.
Les deux qualifications et les deux courses disputées en support du Grand Prix d’Émilie Romagne de Formule 1 seront retransmises en direct sur la page Facebook des Renault Sport Series et la chaîne YouTube de Renault Sport.
The fight to enter the top ten also promises to be fascinating. Renault Sport Academy driver Hadrien David (MP Motorsport) will aim for a solid performance to underline his progress in front of the movers and shakers of the only French team in Formula 1.
The competition will be fierce though as Tijmen van der Helm (FA Racing), Paul Aron (ART Grand Prix), Amaury Cordeel (FA Racing) and László Tóth (Bhaitech Racing) would also like to impress in Italy while Nicola Marinangeli (Bhaitech Racing) and Reshad De Gerus (Arden Motorsport) will chase after more points.
Currently sixth in the British F4 Championship, British teenager Abbi Pulling (FA Racing) will hope to make the most of this prestigious meeting to discover the Formula Renault FR-19 and the Formula Renault Eurocup. At the same time, Michael Belov will resume his programme in the category with R-ace GP after trying his hand at the FIA Formula 3 Championship while Petr Ptáček will complete the MP Motorsport trio of drivers.
Saturday October 31
12h00–12h20 Qualifying 1
15h30–16h05 Race 1
Sunday November 1
8h55–9h15 Qualifying 2
10h30–11h05 Race 2