By Irina Boyarskaya

Photo: Akis Temperidis


The race in Magny-Cours pleased with sunny weather, dynamic but not embarrassing story and accurately dispensed dose of unpredictability.



After the successful rounds in free practices, where Oleksandr Gaidai demonstrated the best time in Division B twice, the qualification was, overall, the event to observe formalities. But the results were discouraging: we got only the fourth place among gentlemen drivers! The most astonishing fact was that the pilot himself couldn't find an explanation:


"I just can't explain what has happened. I can't say that my driving style was rather different on the qualification. I haven't expected such a result and, moreover, I haven't even supposed it could be possible!"



But the situation was as it was and we had to play with the cards we had. Thus, there was no need to four-flush: the Saturday race is the first of the two Magny-Cours races, and the start in Vallelunga is just in a week, there is not much space to risk.



Come Ledogar affably waved his competitors goodbye having started from pole and drove towards the finish. There wasn't any further race event to touch either his leading position or his good mood. There is a man driving with all his pleasure, and the fact that 24 more Porsches can't catch up with him is their own problem, isn't it?



Steven Palette and Nicolas Armindo got immediately engaged into the forlorn duel. Nicolas Marroc lost several positions due to the error. Sasha Bottemanne fell out of the race.


Oleksandr Gaidai quickly overran Laurent Pasquali and got his claws into Roar Lindland. The following 20 minutes became for the poor Norwegian racer the one desperate attempt to get rid of the stubborn Tsunami RT pilot.



Gaidai began overtaking on the outer and inner trajectories, exhausted Lindland with endless attacks, and Roar's nerves failed. He made a mistake falling for Gaidai's pressure and gave way to the Ukrainian pilot.



For the moment there was only one Division B competitor ahead of him – Christophe Lapierre. But there were four more laps to the finish – too little time to overtake the gap but enough to make a mistake. Oleksandr made a logical choice to come to finish carefully and get a cup for the second place in the race.



As expected, Come Ledogar successfully won the overall classification. His podium mates were Maxime Jousse and Gael Castelli who finally had won the battle with Vincent Beltoise.



But the most spectacular participation in the race was that of Lonni Martins. Having started from the 14th position, the Portuguese driver could reach the fifth place in overall classification! At this, Martins couldn't close the driver's door and he could overrun only to the left of a competitor. And he could get on the nerves of Beltoise, jealously defending his fourth position, gently waving with the loose door to every overrun pilot! But the stewards assessed Martins' maneuvers with 30 penalty seconds after the race, having wormed him on the 13th position in the overall classification.


Porsche Carrera Cup France, Magny-Cours
Race 1 (overall)

1. LEDOGAR Come (Team Martinet - Alméras) 21 laps
2. JOUSSE Maxime (Sebastien Loeb Racing) +2.657
3. CASTELLI Gael (Larbre Competition) +15.134
...12. GAIDAI Oleksander (Tsunami RT) +48.095
...21. CAUMES Jacques (Caumes Armatures) +1 lap


Race 1 (Division B)

1. LAPIERRE Christophe (@Loeb Racing) 21 laps
2. GAIDAI Oleksander (Tsunami RT) +4.541
3. LINDLAND Roar (Sebastien Loeb Racing) +5.959
...9. CAUMES Jacques (Caumes Armatures) +1 lap


Tsunami RT team significantly changed the settings of the car before the second qualification. The Porsche with the yellow-and-blue flag on the roof gaily nickered with all its 460 horse powers, went clatter and leaped into action. The second time result in the qualification was quite decent, moreover, the gap with the leader was only 1.4 seconds in comparison to 2.3 seconds before.



Come Ledogar, having started from pole, quickly drove towards the finish. Steven Palette and Nicolas Armindo got immediately engaged into the forlorn duel. Nicolas Marroc lost several positions due to the error. Sasha Bottemanne fell out of the race... Does it resemble anything?


Nevertheless, let's play the "Spot the difference" of Sunday and Saturday races.



This time Alexandre Cougnaud and Tom Dillmann were fighting for the second position in the leading group. Dillmann managed to worm Cougnaud out of the silver podium within the last five minutes.


Lonni Martins got not the penalty but the pit lane crossing, for a change.


Laurent Pasquali and Christophe Lapierre finished the race on the second lap after the close amicable meeting, having turned around on the gravel on different sides of the track, to finish it all.


And the tough competition between Roar Lindland and Oleksandr Gaidai was taking place in the beginning of the second set of ten places. But this time Gaidai overran the Norvegian racer three times and the latter got back his position. The problem was as follows: Lindland was not above the cut-off for overrun.



And the podium again, and again we could see Gaidai on the second step of it at Division B prize-giving. But Tsunami RT team made a protest to the race direction having provided the onboard video from Gaidai's car. The protest was satisfied, and Oleksandr Gaidai got his deserved gold!



Porsche Carrera Cup France, Magny-Cours
Race 2 (overall)

1. LEDOGAR Come (Team Martinet - Alméras) 15 laps
2. DILLMANN Tom (Harting by RT) +4.512
3. COUGNAUD Alexandre (Racing Technology) +7.673
...13. GAIDAI Oleksander (Tsunami RT) +34.869
...24. CATTANEO Marc (Team Martinet-Almeras) +2 laps


Race 2 (Division B)

1. GAIDAI Oleksander (Tsunami RT) 15 laps
2. HAMON Christophe (Racing Technology) +8.569
3. GLORIEUX Jean (Speed Lover) +20.957
...9. CATTANEO Marc (Team Martinet-Almeras) +2 laps


The three-week racing marathon finishes the next weekend with the weekend race of Porsche Carrera Cup Italy on Vallelunga track. Follow our news!