Canadian Follows Up Test Pace with Strong Race Form
Toronto, Ontario (May 26, 2014) – Luke Chudleigh enjoyed his best showing of the season at the weekend, 24th-25th May, competing in Round 3 of the 2014 Formula Renault 2.0 ALPS Series at the Red Bull Ring in Austria. The 19-year-old collected a fifth place finish on Saturday followed by ninth at the checkered on Sunday competing for Tech1 Racing.
After a strong pre-season test at the Spielberg-track, Chudleigh translated that pace, and confidence, into his first double-finish of the year after a frustrating start to his second season competing in Europe.
The Milton racer was fast out of the box during Friday’s practice sessions and carried his form over into qualifying for the opening race. Taking fifth on the grid, he then ensured he maintained his level of speed throughout the 16-lap race around the 4.3km Austrian circuit. On pace with the top-three and successfully defending from a pack all fighting for fifth, Luke held off his challengers to score fifth at the checkered, improving on his previous best of eighth place two weeks ago at Pau.
Saturday’s race saw a new face on the top step of the podium with Russia’s Matevos Isaakyan scoring the win for JR Motorsport. The remaining podium slots were then filled by Great Britain’s George Russell in second followed by series leader and Koiranen GP team-mate, Nyck De Vries from The Netherlands.
Sunday’s outing had Luke starting from seventh but another trademark fast getaway had him up to fifth by the first turn at the start. Questionable racing from Italy’s Ignazio D’Agosto, notably cutting the track in an effort to try and pass Chudleigh, saw the Canadian flat-spot his tires while defending. While D’Agosto would later be penalized for his actions, Luke’s pace was compromised and he wound up ninth at the checkered, still a solid result but less than was expected given his earlier form.
Matevos Isaakyan swept the top step of the podium, the Russian taking Sunday’s win chased home by Italy’s Alession Rovera and four-time race winner Nyck De Vries.
“First off I’m delighted that we’ve resolved the issues that blighted the start to the season,” stated Chudleigh on reviewing his weekend. “We proved here this weekend that we have great pace, which we knew from earlier in the year, and that when we run fault-free we can be up there challenging at the head of the pack. We’re still working on improving a few things but I’m satisfied with the weekend and our first double-finish inside the top-ten. I’ve got a few back-to-back race weekends now which I love as it’s all valuable time in the car and race experience. Spa’s next and I can’t wait.”
Chudleigh will make his second start in the 2014 Formula Renault 2.0 Eurocup this weekend, Friday 31st May to Sunday 1st June, at Belgium’s legendary Spa-Francorchamps Circuit. He’ll follow that up with Round 4 of the Formula Renault 2.0 ALPS Series the weekend after, 6th-8th June, also at Spa.
Luke Chudleigh is supported by Vitamindrip®, Chudleigh’s, ARM Training, Tech1 Racing, Adidas and PRIME/Wickens Management.
ENDS – www.lukechudleigh.com / @LukeChudleigh