Charles Milesi (R-ace GP) has won the Formula Renault Eurocup Sunday race and curtain raiser of the 76th Formula 1 Monaco Grand Prix. Starting from pole, the French rookie denied Alex Peroni (MP Motorsport) the honour of winning all the Formula Renault street races this year. Third place went to Renault Sport Academy driver Victor Martins (R-ace GP). Yifei Ye (Josef Kaufmann Racing) finished fourth and maintains his lead in the general classification ahead of Christian Lundgaard (MP Motorsport) and Charles Milesi.
After setting fastest time in Friday qualifying, Charles Milesi started from pole ahead of Alex Peroni, Yifei Ye, Victor Martins and Lorenzo Colombo (JD Motorsport).
Milesi controls the start
When the lights went out, Charles Milesi resisted the attack from Alex Peroni to hold on to the lead, while Victor Martins took third place from Yifei Ye. However, Sami Taoufik (Arden Motorsport) and Christian Muñoz (AVF by Adrián Vallés) returned to the pits to change their damaged front-wings.
The leaders ran nose-to-tail when on lap three Lorenzo Colombo’s race came to an end at the Chicane. Back in the field, the action was intense with an incident involving Thomas Neubauer (Tech1 Racing), Axel Matus (AVF by Adrián Vallés) and Christian Hahn (Fortec Motorsports) at the hairpin.
A day of glory for the Frenchman
At half-distance, Alex Peroni made a small mistake, allowing Charles Milesi to pull away and Victor Martins to become a threat. Despite the efforts of those behind him, Charles Milesi didn’t falter. The French driver went on for the win and received the winner’s trophy from Thierry Bolloré, Chief Operating Officer, Groupe Renault.
Alex Peroni and Victor Martins completed the podium ahead of Yifei Ye and Christian Lundgaard, both like yesterday top five finishers. Max Defourny was sixth ahead of Neil Verhagen (Tech1 Racing). The Red Bull Junior Team driver didn’t crack under the pressure coming from the chase group to finish in front of Max Fewtrell (R-ace GP), Logan Sargeant (R-ace GP) and Thomas Maxwell (JD Motorsport).
The next round of the 2018 Formula Renault Eurocup will be held at the Red Bull Ring (July 20-22).
Charles Milesi (R-ace GP): “Just to race in Monaco was incredible enough, but it was so much more with a pole position and a win in my first year! Today, I managed to get a clean start, put in a strong opening lap and immediately build a lead. That’s what was missing yesterday. The end of the race was a bit more difficult with some rear-tyre degradation. Fortunately, everything went well. We scored a lot of points as the F1 teams watched on. I don’t know what they think about my weekend, but it could be interesting for whatever comes next in my career!”
Alex Peroni (MP Motorsport): “It is weird to be disappointed with a second place in Monaco! At the start, I pressured Charles. I was running very close to him and at his pace in the first five laps. Unfortunately, the grip level was a lot different than yesterday. I locked-up the wheels at the Chicane. I touched the Armco a few times and Victor made use of that to catch me up. I am still satisfied with my weekend and I want to thank the team. We need to understand why we have done so well on the street circuits and not the others. I have lost a lot of points in the championship race, but I will try to win as many races as I can during the rest of the season.”
Victor Martins (R-ace GP): “Yesterday, I noticed Yifei struggling to get on pace. My plan was to get a good start and to try to pass him on lap one. I got past him on the outside at turn one! The rest of the race went fine. I pressured Alex and didn’t make a single mistake. I think this is the best result I could have hoped for following qualifying. It was an encouraging weekend. These first podiums in the Formula Renault Eurocup are exactly what I need to be full of confidence. I can feel the tide turning!”
|1. Yifei Ye (Josef Kaufmann Racing)||112|
|2. Christian Lundgaard (MP Motorsport)||98|
|3. Charles Milesi (R-ace GP)||82|
|4. Logan Sargeant (R-ace GP)||80|
|5. Max Fewtrell (R-ace GP)||79|
*Results subject to confirmation following technical and sporting verifications.