Baguette clinches title as Pic wins race

Charles Pic led home Tech 1 Racing team-mate Brendon Hartley in a formation finish at the Nurburging this afternoon, but the biggest celebrations of the weekend were reserved for new champion Bertrand Baguette

Baguette clinches title as Pic wins race

From seventh on the grid, the Belgian survived a wobbly start to proceedings in which he dropped two positions, to clinch the Formula Renault 3.5 series title by virtue of a solid fifth place finish for Draco.

"I took a good start, but changing from first to second gear I got neutral," said a satisfied Baguette. "I lost several positions, and knew then that I would really have to push and do some overtaking. The team helped with a good pitstop, and thanks to some retirements I could finish in P5.

"It has been a very stressful weekend, with lots of pressure, so it's good to be able to go to [the final at] Motorland and enjoy myself. I've just had one clutch failure in the opening round at Barcelona, and after that I have finished all my races. My main aim now is F1, but we'll have to see what happens."

The race at the front was largely determined in the seconds following the start. From the inside of the front row, Pic found superior traction away from the line to power past Hartley's pole position car.

The Tech 1 duo had an agreed strategy that whichever driver was leading would have the advantage of taking a later pitstop. Hartley was duly brought in from his pursuit of Pic on lap eight, while Pic was afforded an extra two laps before changing his front tyres. The Renault Development driver returned to the track with Hartley's Red Bull car safely in his mirrors, and thereafter had a clean run to his second victory of the season.

Comtec's Jon Lancaster had appeared set for a safe third place following a determined start. The Leeds driver had been the biggest threat to the Tech 1 pair over the early laps, but lost ground, if not track position, by opting to delay his pitstop until lap 12.

Already smarting over the race director's decision to award him a 10s penalty in Saturday's race, Lancaster was saddled with more misery when his car ground to a halt at Turn 5 on lap 18.

Instead, it was Fairuz Fauzy who picked up third place and his second podium of the weekend. P1's James Walker put the disappointment of retiring with overheating in race one behind him to take fourth place, within a second of the Mofaz Fortec car at the chequered flag. Walker's points move the Jersey racer ahead of Jaime Alguersuari in the drivers' standings. The Toro Rosso Formula 1 driver benefited from the late race retirement of Carlin team-mate Oliver Turvey to take sixth.

Pos Driver Team Time/Gap 1. Charles Pic Tech 1 45m59.547s 2. Brendon Hartley Tech 1 + 0.695s 3. Fairuz Fauzy Fortec + 13.947s 4. James Walker P1 + 14.830s 5. Bertrand Baguette Draco + 22.491s 6. Jaime Alguersuari Carlin + 26.508s 7. Marco Barba Draco + 36.660s 8. John Martin Comtec + 42.947s 9. Daniil Move P1 + 43.299s 10. Chris van der Drift Epsilon Euskadi + 45.810s 11. Anton Nebylitskiy SG + 48.475s 12. Sten Pentus Fortec + 48.635s 13. Keisuke Kunimoto Epsilon Euskadi + 49.558s 14. Julian Leal Prema + 53.261s 15. Mihai Marinescu Interwetten + 54.534s 16. Salvador Duran Interwetten + 58.141s 17. Federico Leo Pons + 1m15.567s Retirements: Jon Lancaster Comtec 18 laps Oliver Turvey Carlin 16 laps Pasquale di Sabatino RC 16 laps Marcos Martinez Pons 15 laps Filip Salaquarda Prema 9 laps Guillaume Moreau SG 6 laps 
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Baguette closes on title with victory

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