Martinius Stenshorne took victory in race 1 and doubled his tally of wins in the Formula Regional European Championship by Alpine. After an intense battle for the remaining podium positions, Kas Haverkort and Santiago Ramos celebrated on the second and third steps.
Race 1 at the Hungaroring lived up to expectations following the fiercely contested morning qualifying session. Martinius Stenshorne, from R-ace GP, secured his second win in the single-seater series co-signed by Alpine and ACI Sport, reclaiming the lead in the drivers’ Championship standings and further solidifying his dominance in the Rookie rankings, dedicated to the drivers at the first-year in the category. The Norwegian started from the pole position, but the race was far from easy for him as he was attacked at the start by Santiago Ramos, representing RPM. and Andrea Kimi Antonelli, Prema Racing driver. While defending the inside from the Mexican’s incursions, Stenshorne left the door open for Antonelli, who decisively passed on the outside and took the lead after the first corners. However, the Bolognese driver encountered car troubles and dropped down to fifth place. Stenshorne regained the lead in race 1, built a gap and brought home the result. Behind him, an exciting battle for second place ensued, with Ramos closely pursued by Dutchman Kas Haverkort. Haverkort, representing Van Amersfoort Racing, managed to perform a high-level overtaking maneuver and crossed the finish line in second after the intense battle. It was from that point a tough race for Santiago Ramos, who found himself defending third place from the constant attacks of Michael Belov from G4 Racing, following in fourth. Belov made numerous attempts to secure a podium position, with thrilling side-by-side duels, but Ramos skillfully shut the door each time, earning his first podium in the Formula Regional European Championship by Alpine.
No luck for the G4 Racing driver, who has to settle for fourth place, thus collecting valuable points. Crossing the line in sixth, after Antonelli, finished Joshua Dufek from Van Amersfoort Racing, also a key contender in the fierce battle for the podium throughout the race. Rafael Camara from Prema Racing finished seventh in the first race of the Hungarian weekend. Having lost a position at the start to Tim Tramnitz, the Brazilian driver skillfully regained the P7 a few laps later, while the German driver from R-ace GP finished eighth, despite the attempts to climb up the standings. Lorenzo Fluxà, the Spanish driver from Prema, battled his way to ninth place after initially dueling with Macéo Capietto from RPM and later with Victor Bernier. It was precisely Bernier, from MP Motorsport, who already showcased to be exceptionally fast throughout the Hungarian weekend, that passed under the checkered flag in tenth. According to a post-race decision of the Stewards, the Frenchman gained the P10 on Capietto by cutting through a corner, for this reason, he had to drop a position. In addition, he received a 10 seconds penalty for moving forward from his grid position before the signal to start the race was given. The last point at stake was then obtained by Capietto, rounding the top 10.
Unlucky race instead for Lucas Medina, of the Saintèloc Racing team, and Nikhil Bohra, in Trident colors. Medina touched Bohra’s car on lap two and both competitors were forced to an early end.
The action at the Hungaroring track will now resume on Sunday, June 18, where another great for qualifying is expected with Group B taking to the track first this time, from 9:00 to 9:15 and Group A from 9:20 to 9:35. The thrilling finale of the weekend will take place at 16:30, featuring a 30-minute plus one lap duration.
Motorsport enthusiasts can catch all the qualifying sessions and both the races of the weekend live on the official Formula Regional European Championship by Alpine YouTube page (@formularegionaleubyalpine), or attend the event in person. Info and ticket are available on Hungaroring official website, here: https://hungaroring.hu/site/en/races/international-gt-open.
Martinius Stenshorne: “The qualifying was really good. The race start was not the best. I was quite lucky with Antonelli’s technical issue, then the race was just about managing the tires and managing everything to bring it home. It is difficult to overtake here, so the start is quite important. It has been a good start of the season and is nice to bounce back after a tough Barcelona round.”
Kas Haverkort: “I’m quite happy of course with the results, starting from P4. Starting from the outside was just a bit slippery I felt, but anyway, I came quite well away. I was in P4 for the first few laps. Then Antonelli had a technical issue and was good for me, of course. After I got closer a bit to Ramos, I made the move into T1 on the outside and I just kept it there. I’m quite happy with the result, the pace is really strong.”
Santiago Ramos: “It was quite tough, because we knew we had the pace for qualifying for one lap. We had it since the beginning of the Championship, but we were struggling quite a bit with the degradation of the tires and this track is quite tough on the tires. It was about managing and trying to minimize mistakes. Obviously, I was trying to defend from Kas, I started to push a bit more and the tires started degradating. The problem is after he passed, I had the tires in really bad shape, so I just had to manage until the end and try to keep the other drivers behind.”