Once again the ELITE 2 Division confirmed its reputation as the most unpredictable division in the NASCAR Whelen Euro Series. This time it was rookie Florian Venturi who grabbed the maiden NASCAR win for himself and the Go Fas Racing team, earning the title of Prince of Brands Hatch.
The Frenchman passed polesitter Guillaume Dumarey (#24 PK Carsport Chevrolet Camaro) at Druids on lap 15 and drove away to cross the finish line with a 7.6 seconds advantage on the Belgian, becoming the fifth different winner in six ELITE 2 races.
“I really love this circuit,” said the 17-year-old former Formula 4 driver. “It was a really hard race because Guillaume Dumarey was very fast. In turn 2 I took my opportunity to pass him to take the lead and I was able to manage the lead until the end of the race. I am so exhausted but I am also so happy about the first win for me and my team. I am so proud of the great work we are doing with the Go Fas Racing team.”
Franciacorta race winner Guillaume Dumarey went on the grid after the PK Carsport team replaced the engine of the #24 Camaro following the ELITE 1 race and successfully defended his second place against Freddy Nordstrom (#33 Mavi Mishumotors Chevrolet SS), who climbed on the podium in his NWES return. Wilfried Boucenna (#37 Knauf Racing Team Ford Mustang) edged Guillaume Deflandre (#77 Memphis Racing Chevrolet Camaro) for fourth place.
“I was hoping for the win for sure because it is father’s day,” said Dumarey. “I just called my dad this morning and I said that I was going to win for him. Venturi was very quick and faster than me. I was defending like hell but at some point I had to surrender and think about the championship. The team did a great job because we lost the engine in ELITE 1 and they replaced it within two hours and that was amazing.”
Ulysse Delsaux (#3 Tepac RDV Compétition Toyota Camry) was sixth under the checkered flag, right ahead of Kenko Miura (#2 Alex Caffi Motorsport Toyota Camry), who won the Rookie Cup. Gil Linster (#44 CAAL Racing Chevrolet SS) beat Hugo Bec (#51 RDV Compétition Ford Mustang) for ninth, while Pedro Bonnet (#90 Braxx Racing Ford Mustang) rounded out the top-10.
Ninth under the checkered flag, Nicholas Risitano (#8 Racers Motorsport Ford Mustang) received a 30-second penalty after the race for causing an avoidable collision Boucenna.
Jerry de Weerdt (#78 Braxx Racing Ford Mustang) won the Legend Trophy by finishing 13th and Arianna Casoli (#54 CAAL Racing Toyota Camry) got the win in the Lady Cup.
The NASCAR Whelen Euro Series will now head to France for the hugely anticipated Oval World Challenge at Tours, France on June 30 – July 1. It’s time for some exciting short track racing!