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Barcelona: Series preview

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Barcelona: Series preview
Oct 11, 2008, 11:11 PM

Team title up for grabs in Barcelona Although the driver's title has already been won by Giedo Van der Garde (P1 Motorsport) the Team title is still up for grabs. Tech 1 Racing leads the standings, ahead of P1 Motorsport, Ultimate Signature and ...

Team title up for grabs in Barcelona

Although the driver's title has already been won by Giedo Van der Garde (P1 Motorsport) the Team title is still up for grabs. Tech 1 Racing leads the standings, ahead of P1 Motorsport, Ultimate Signature and Prema Powerteam. Consistency will be the key for these four teams in Barcelona if they are to win this highly coveted championship.

The last meeting of the season promises plenty of excitement in Formula Renault 3.5 Series. Newly crowned champion Giedo Van der Garde will not be taking part in the last two races of the season. The 2008 winner will however be in Barcelona for the World Series by Renault prize-giving ceremony due to be held on Sunday evening.

The stage is therefore set for the three drivers behind Giedo to fight it out for the runner-up spot. Going into this year's final round, Fabio Carbone (Ultimate Signature) is second, two points ahead of Julien Jousse (Tech 1 Racing) and seventeen ahead of Miguel Molina (Prema Powerteam).

Fifth and sixth respectively, Charles Pic (Tech 1 Racing) and Mikhail Aleshin (Carlin Motorsport) still have a chance, mathematically speaking, of claiming second place. But with a twenty-seven and twenty-eight point deficit, they would need something approaching a minor miracle to do so.

The most important issue for all these drivers, however, will be the Team title, which is far from decided. Tech 1 Racing will be putting their faith in Julien Jousse, a five time top-three finisher but still without a win this season, and Charles Pic in their attempt to become the first team to win a second championship. P1 Motorsport, Ultimate Signature and Prema Powerteam will not, however, be content to be also-rans.

Ever since Fabio Carbone's (Ultimate Signature) first win in Hungary, the Ultimate Signature team has continued to achieve good results, particularly in collecting forty-one points at Le Mans. No team has bettered that this season! Fabio Carbone and Esteban Guerrieri will therefore be looking to repeat that performance, and pull off what would be a remarkable feat -- win the Team title for Ultimate Signature in its first season in Formula Renault 3.5 Series.

They would be advised, however, to keep a close eye on Prema Powerteam, and on Miguel Molina in particular. With home advantage in Barcelona on his favourite track, the Spaniard hopes to at least equal last year's performance, when he won one of the races. Winner at the Nuburgring and at Estoril, the Catalan has hit top form at the end of the season. His team-mate Alvaro Barba (Prema Powerteam) is still looking for his first win of the season. He will also be hoping to grab any opportunities in the year's final two races.

Other Spanish drivers are also likely to feature at the Catalunya track that they all know inside-out. Marco Barba (Draco Racing) will be looking to finish on the podium for the first time this season. Madrid-born Marcos Martinez (Pons Racing), who came close to victory at Silverstone, will be looking to secure his first race win. Aleix Alcaraz (Pons Racing) and Siso Cunill (KTR) will be content to move closer to the leaders to wrap up their first season in the category in style.

Finally, there will be a new addition to the Formula Renault 3.5 Series driver line-up for the last round of the season, with Estonian driver Sten Pentus joining Red Devil Team Comtec for the two races in Barcelona.

-credit: wsbyrenault.com

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