Arctic Energy drivers took the podium twice in France!
A month ago, the Arctic Energy team planned to travel to the third stage of the European Ligier series in sunny Barcelona, but two weeks ago the ELMS (European Le Mans Series) series, which is held in conjunction with the Ligier European Series championship, changed the racing location due to the coronavirus - the pilots travel to Le Castellet, France.
The previous stage in Belgium ended quite well for the Russian team: a victory in the first race of two. The task remained the same - victory in qualification and the maximum number of points in both races.
The team failed to win the qualifiers, our pilots Sergey Egorov and Nerses Isaakyan showed third time in the first qualification and second time in the second one.
The qualifications were held in 33-degree heat, but the start of the first race on Saturday was given with cloudy skies and lower temperatures. Viktor Shaitar’s Ligier JS2R started from pole position, Fabien Michal and Nerses Isaakyan started from the second row. The start turned out to be unsuccessful, on the first chicane Claude Degremont pushed Nerses's car out, which caused our pilot to be in the tail of the field. He stayed there for a pretty long time. The pit stop was also unsuccessful, Arctic Energy lost 9 extra seconds. But Isaakyan was determined, the racer began a thorny return to the leaders in the last 15 minutes of the race. And to the surprise of the audience, he succeeded: a fantastic duel for second place with Clement Seyler in the last meters of the final lap turned into a surreal victory for the Arctic Energy team, which started the race extremely unsatisfactorily.
“It was amazing. We never give up, but everything here indicated that we would not see the podium. What Nerses has created is an amazing example of willpower and character", - the team's technical director Povilas Jankavičius admired the result of the race.
The second race was already going to the accompaniment of rain, all teams “shod” their cars in rain tires. Nerses Isaakyan showed the best race time in the first laps, while several cars flew off the slippery track. The rain was getting stronger every minute, so the marshals released a Safety Car, which drove several laps. There were 4 minutes left until the end of the race, but the organizers showed a red flag, stopping the race due to worsening weather conditions. Since at this moment Nerses Isaakyan was third, this result was recorded in the final protocol of the race.
“We need to improve in some aspects, but two podiums are great considering the weather conditions. We plan to work on the settings in order to impose the fight on Sebastian Baud, the championship leader, ” said Arctic Energy team captain Sergey Egorov.
The team is now preparing for the Ultimate Cup in Dijon, where our «arctic» pilots will compete in Mitjet 2L category.