Thirty drivers headed to the Gers for the first meeting on the calendar. While Alexandre Finkelstein and Florian Coruble (GM Sport) set the pace during the practice sessions, David Pouget was the fastest on Saturday evening to claim the first pole position of the year, more than two-tenths of a second ahead of teammate Alexandre Albouy. Nicolas Milan and Alexandre Finkelstein shared row two ahead of Florian Coruble and Jordi Palomeras (Milan Competition), first among the competitors in Clio Cup España.
Despite Alexandre Albouy’s excellent start, David Pouget held onto the lead. Nicolas Milan took advantage of the duel to get between the two men in the first sequence before attacking the leader at the Épingle de l’École. Nicolas Milan tried another move on lap three, but David Pouget resisted as Alexandre Albouy and Alexandre Finkelstein looked on. The leading quartet broke away from the chase group led by Florian Coruble. Pressured by Jordi Palomeras and Adrian Schimpf, Florian Coruble lost his position to Adrian Schimpf (AST Competition) on lap ten.
At mid-race, David Pouget increased the gap to Nicolas Milan while the battle for third place between Alexandre Albouy and Alexandre Finkelstein was on the boil. The latter found the opening on his teammate with five laps to go. Meanwhile, the battle for fifth place was also heating up, with seven competitors within four seconds of each other at the beginning of the final sprint. Adrian Schimpf surprised Florian Coruble on lap 13, while Aurélien Renet saw his race end prematurely after contact with Alejandro Schimpf (AST Competition).
The closing minutes saw a flurry of track-limit penalties. David Pouget and Alexandre Finkelstein were among the sanctioned drivers. The GPA Racing driver was first under the chequered flag and lost first place to Nicolas Milan. Alexandre Albouy was initially fourth but moved up to second place by 165/1000th of a second ahead of David Pouget. In spite of the penalty, Alexandre Finkelstein won the Challengers’ category ahead of Adrian Schimpf and Florian Coruble. Seventh overall, Jérémy Bordagaray won the Racers category while Alejandro Schimpf, Mathieu Lannepoudenx and Florian Venturi (GM Sport) completed the top ten.
With the victory, Nicolas Milan starts the defence of his Clio Cup Series super-winner title perfectly by taking the lead in the general classification ahead of Alexandre Albouy and David Pouget. Alexandre Finkelstein leads among the Challengers, as Jérémy Bordagaray among the Racers.
CLIO CUP FRANCE
With the leading drivers entered in Clio Cup France, Nicolas Milan also became the first leader of the season in France ahead of Alexandre Albouy and David Pouget. Alexandre Finkelstein scored maximum points in the Challengers category ahead of Florian Coruble and Florian Venturi. Jérémy Bordagaray won in the Racers Cup over Lionel Viguier (T2CM) and Cédric Delcroix (GPA Racing).
CLIO CUP ESPAÑA
Race one at Nogaro also marked the start of Clio Cup España. Adrian Schimpf finished fifth overall after an intense fight and won ahead of Jeremy Bordagaray and Alejandro Schimpf who both moved up one position after Jordi Palomeras received a 30 seconds of penalties. Adrian Schimpf also won in the Challengers, followed by his twin brother Alejandro Schimpf and Mathieu Lannepoudenx. Jérémy Bordagaray won the Racers category ahead of Sergio Casalins (Motorismo Racing Team) and Joaquin Rodrigo (Team VRT).