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Strategy pays off for debutant van der Drift

Chris van der Drift comes away from his maiden World Series by Renault event third in the overall standings after climbing onto the podium in only his second race.

Having concluded a late deal to race for Epilson Euskadi in 2009, the reigning International Formula Master champion enjoyed a successful weekend, reaching Superpole on his first attempt before finishing a comfortable seventh in the opening race.

However, a superb strategic play from his Spanish team paid rich dividends in the second race, van der Drift being told to delay his mandatory pit-stop due to the possibility of rain at the mid-way point.

The decision had come after the New Zealander was punted down to 21st position at the end of the opening lap, but when rain did eventually arrive, he emerged in the leading group and ran as high as third position.

Although an error on the treacherous surface would drop him into the lower reaches of the top ten shortly afterwards, a red flag would swiftly follow for an accident elsewhere on the circuit. With results being counted from the previous lap, van der Drift was allowed to keep his podium finish.

"This was a great weekend with a nice podium finish to complete it", said Van der Drift after the race. "This is really good for the team and to be in third place in the championship after the first weekend is fantastic.

“We need to find a little speed still but I have no doubt that will happen. I would like to thank the team enormously for the perfect strategy and the work they have done on the car for me."

Related Pictures

Click on relevant pic to enlarge
Chris van der Drift - Epsilon Euskadi [pic credit: Renault Sport]
Chris van der Drift - Epsilon Euskadi [pic credit: Renault Sport]
Chris van der Drift - Epsilon Euskadi [pic credit: Renault Sport]
Carlos Sainz Jr  - DAMS [pic credit: Renault Sport]
Start of the FR3.5 season opener at Monza [pic credit: Renault Sport]
Photo: Alexandre Guillaumot/DPPI
Photo: GEPA pictures/Dutch Photo Agency/Sebastiaan Rozendaal
Photo: GEPA pictures/Dutch Photo Agency/Diederik van der Laan
Photo: Renault Sport/DPPI
Photo: Florent Gooden / DPPI / Renault Sport Media
Photo: Frederic Le Floch / DPPI / Renault Sport Media
Photo: Dutch Photo Agency
Photo: Jose Espallargas / ASM
Beitske Visser - AVF [pic credit: Renault Sport Media]
Matthieu Vaxiviere - Lotus [pic credit: Renault Sport Media]
Marlon Stockinger - Lotus [pic credit: Renault Sport Media]
Marlon Stockinger - Lotus [pic credit: Renault Sport Media]
Will Stevens - Strakka Racing [pic credit: Renault Sport Media]

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