World RX Of Italy Underlines Albatec 208’s Potential

Franciacorta, Italy — Sunday 28 September, 2014: After a promising opening day in round ten of the FIA World Rallycross Championship presented by Monster Energy in Franciacorta yesterday, Albatec Racing backed it up with an equally strong performance today, with Jacques Villeneuve sixth overall in the final heat, with the fourth fastest individual lap time.

Two great starts by the former F1 World Champion, in his debut season in rallycross, allowed the French Canadian to push his Peugeot 208 to the limit, powering the two-litre, 16v powerhouse to double race wins.

From the huge 38 car entry, that included the cream of rallycross racers from around the globe, the Indycar World Series Champion clinched an easy lights-to-flag race victory this morning on the freshly watered 1.4km track near Milan, but it was his second qualifying race this afternoon that saw a return to the form that netted him the fastest overall lap time in Norway earlier in the year.

For Andy Scott, already a semi final qualifier in five of the previous nine rounds of World RX, the day didn’t start off so well. Starting third in his opening heat, the 2011 British Rallycross Vice-Champion was squeezed into turn one, taking a hit from the side and the back, to effectively rule him out of the battle for the semi final places.

His second heat proved more successful however; a fantastic start allowing the Lochfoot racer to get the drop on World RX of Norway winner Reiniss Nitiss into turn one. A strong opening lap allowed Andy to hold the advantage despite a tap from Nitiss on lap two, before he elected to take the joker. Resuming in third, the Albatec team boss quickly regained second position and despite a concerted last lap charge, finished just adrift of the eventual winner.

Although neither Jacques nor Andy achieved their objective of reaching the semi finals this weekend, their performance leaves the Dumfries team optimistic ahead of the penultimate round of World RX, at the Istanbul Circuit in Turkey over the weekend of 11&12 November.

Andy Scott, Team Principal and driver Albatec Racing #26 :

“It’s really been a day of ups and downs for the entire team really, as Jacques had a very strong result in both his races to take two race wins, and a fast overall time that should have been good enough to see him progress. Unfortunately his one bad race yesterday was all it took to prevent that happening.

“For me, well today’s first race was disappointing, I made a great start but suffered a hit that affected the car’s handling, but managed to get it to the flag. The second race was much better, another great start to take the lead, but despite my efforts on the last lap, Reinis just got the race win. All in all not the end to the weekend I wanted, but I’d say things are going in the right direction.”

Jacques Villeneuve, driver Albatec Racing #25 :

“It’s incredibly frustrating to have had the bad result in one race yesterday, as the two heats today really showed the potential of the Albatec 208 which allowed me to take two race wins today and the sixth fastest overall race time.

“Coupled to the fourth overall race time in the second heat shows that when we don’t suffer with punctures and bad luck, we can turn in some good lap times to be in a position to challenge for a place in the semi finals. Ultimately the track watering this morning meant that all subsequent heats were much faster, but even without that, it was the poor result yesterday that really ruined the weekend for us. We will look forward to a better result next time to end the season on a high.”

Que bacana que Jacques venceu corridas este fim de semana na Itália. As primeiras dele no campeonato. Infelizmente ele não conseguiu passar para a semi (e com isto para final), porque ontem teve um resultado ruim em uma das baterias. Mas o mais legal é saber que ele está evoluindo, assim como o carro.

Villeneuve não havia participado das duas corridas anteriores por conta de seu trabalho de comentarista de F1 pela TV italiana.

E um mega parabéns para Petter Solberg que mesmo não vencendo a corrida final hoje (chegou em terceiro) sagrou-se o primeiro campeão mundial de Rallycross com duas etapas de antecipação!!! #congrats

 Beijinhos, Ludy


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