Anthony Jurado (Milan Compétition) started from the pole position and had to fight off Marc Guillot (Milan Compétition) before winning ahead of Joran Leneutre (JSB Compétition) and Jerzy Spinkiewicz (Uniq Racing) to reclaim the Clio Cup Europe lead. Victorious among the Challengers, 17-year-old Joran Leneutre also won in Clio Cup France, where David Pouget (GPA Racing) and Nicolas Milan (Milan Compétition) will fight for the title this Sunday... The title will also be up for grabs between Alexandre Albouy (GPA Racing) and Joran Leneutre in the Challengers Cup, and Mathieu Rigoulet (Vic’Team) and Pierre Monmaneix (GPA Racing) in the Gentlemen Drivers Cup !
On Friday, Anthony Jurado and David Pouget dominated the collective tests, the former by 0.018s over his countryman, who replied by 0.014s in the dark. The duel continued on Saturday in qualifying, where Anthony Jurado snatched the pole from David Pouget three minutes before the end of the session.
The race started after sunset, with a clean getaway for Anthony Jurado while David Pouget slipped behind Marc Guillot, third on the grid. Marc Guillot continued his offensive, passing the poleman to take the lead at the North Chicane during an opening lap marked by a collision that caused Alexandre Finkelstein (GPA Racing) to lose a lot of ground.
While Marc Guillot and Anthony Jurado pulled out a modest lead, the chase group led by David Pouget quickly narrowed the gap. Anthony Jurado retook first place on lap three in this non-stop battle for the top spot. Joran Leneutre relegated Marc Guillot to third place on the following lap, but the Frenchman resisted the pressure from Jerzy Spinkiewicz (Uniq Racing) and David Pouget before replying. Nicolas Milan lay in wait for a long time, but he passed David Pouget on lap five while Léo Jousset (Milan Compétition), Aurélien Renet (JSB Compétition), Nikola Miljkovic (Tempo Racing Team) and Alejandro Schimpf (Cotauto Motorsport) were fighting it out in his rear-view mirror.
Marc Guillot was far from giving up and reclaimed the lead from Anthony Jurado on lap seven. Jerzy Spinkiewicz did the same to Joran Leneutre before the French driver replied, while David Pouget counter-attacked Nicolas Milan in a crucial duel for the Clio Cup France title.
In this leading group still grouped in a handful of seconds, Anthony Jurado went on the attack again on the penultimate lap. The Montpellier native found an opening on Marc Guillot and barely finished ahead at the finish line. Challenger Joran Leneutre, who is just as combative, snatched second place from Jerzy Spinkiewicz. Marc Guillot came home in fourth place, ahead of his compatriots David Pouget and Nicolas Milan. Spain’s Alejandro Schimpf took seventh place, overtaking Nikola Miljkovic, while Juuso Panttila (Chefo Sport) surprised Alexandre Albouy (GPA Racing) at the end of the race. Jérémy Bordagaray (Milan Compétition) finished 12th overall, which was good enough for top honours in the Gentlemen Drivers Cup.
CLIO CUP EUROPE
Anthony Jurado scored his eighth Clio Cup Europe victory of the year and now has a 16-point lead over Nicolas Milan, who finished fourth. The Frenchman was joined on the podium by Jerzy Spinkiewicz and Marc Guillot. Challengers Cup title-winner Jerzy Spinkiewicz won for the 12th time, beating Nikola Miljkovic and Juuso Panttila. In the Gentlemen Drivers Cup, Rene Steenmetz is back in the title race with a win over Quinto Stefana (Milan Competition), who is now one point ahead Stephan Polderman (Chefo Sport), third after a three-second penalty for cutting a chicane.
CLIO CUP FRANCE
Thanks to his attack in the final minutes, Joran Leneutre picked up his maiden win in Clio Cup France, beating Jerzy Spinkiewicz and David Pouget. The latter will start the last race of the season with a three-point advantage over Nicolas Milan, fourth today. 17-year-old Joran Leneutre also won the Challengers Cup ahead of Jerzy Spinkiewicz and Alexandre Albouy, who still leads the category by 15 points over... Joran Leneutre ! In the Gentlemen Drivers Cup, where Jérémy Bordagaray won ahead of Pierre Monmaneix and Mathieu Rigoulet, the suspense remains intact as Mathieu Rigoulet only has a seven-point lead over Pierre Monmaneix, the only man who can now deprive him of the title.
CLIO CUP SPAIN
Alejandro Schimpf took the lead on lap one and cruised to victory in Clio Cup Spain, winning ahead of Jordi Palomeras (Team VRT) and Nicolas Abella (Chefo Sport) in a podium monopolised by the Challengers. Seventh-place finisher Alex Royo (Team VRT) still leads the general classification while his closest rival, Nico Abella, cuts his deficit to 11 points. Nicolas Abella is only two points ahead of Jordi Palomeras in the Challengers Cup while France’s Fabien Julien (LR Performance) excelled on home soil with his seventh Gentlemen Drivers Cup victory in seven starts over his rival Joaquin Rodrigo (Vearsa Sport).
The competitors will meet again in the second qualifying session on Sunday at 9:00 am. Race 26 of the season will start at 4:50 pm and be streamed live on the Renault Clio Series Facebook page and YouTube channel.