Comtec to miss Formula Renault 3.5 opener despite Facu Regalia bid

Comtec Racing will miss the opening Formula Renault 3.5 meeting at Aragon this weekend

Comtec to miss Formula Renault 3.5 opener despite Facu Regalia bid

The Norfolk team had hoped to run 2013 GP3 runner-up Facu Regalia for round one.

The Argentinian came onto the driver market at a late stage, having been unable to complete his planned deal with Zeta Corse, for which he had tested extensively over the winter.

Comtec's negotiations with Regalia had progressed to an advanced stage.

Its truck had travelled to Spain during the week, and Regalia issued a press release announcing that he would complete the season with the Phil Blow-managed team.

Comtec sat out pre-season FR3.5 testing, but its cars were understood to have been rebuilt and ready to go "at the turn of a key" according to sources.

Both Comtec and Zeta are believed to be working towards a return to the championship later this season.

Comtec had started 2014 strongly, taking inexperienced Russian Nikolay Martsenko to a podium at Aragon.

However, Martsenko was forced to withdraw from the season due to matters outside of his control, including the death of his father.

FR3.5 STARTS WITH 20-CAR FIELD

The FR3.5 withdrawals are partly offset by the return of Carlin, which ran Mikhail Aleshin and Robert Wickens to back-to-back titles in 2010/11.

That creates a 20-car field for Aragon, which includes Formula 1 juniors from McLaren, Red Bull and Lotus.

Although the order was slightly confused by drivers carrying over new tyres from a recent test, Friday morning's opening practice session was tightly contested.

The top three, led by Lotus F1 Junior Matthieu Vaxiviere, were covered by 0.070 seconds.

Strakka Racing's Swedish rookie Gustav Malja took second, ahead of AVF driver Beitske Visser.

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Zeta Corse set to miss Formula Renault 3.5 opener at Aragon

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