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Apr 12, 2014 - 04:00 PM
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Zeta Corse And Merhi Take Second Place In Monza Season Opener
Posted by: newsla on Apr 12, 2014 - 03:55 PM
Support Series News
Zeta Corse And Merhi Take Second Place In Monza Season Opener

Zeta Corse couldn't have hoped for a better start to their 2014 F.Renault 3.5 campaign. In Monza, the track that is playing host to the WSR season opener, the Russian team made the headlines with a staggering performance from Roberto Merhi who clinched a well deserved second place finish. After securing 5th place on the grid with a very good drive in the morning qualifying session, the Spaniard did even better in Race 1: a perfect start allowed him to overtake three cars straight after the lights went off, and then in the first couple of laps he easily fended off some aggressive attacks from Gasly, who was trying to put pressure on him from behind. Thanks to a pace that was consistently better than the Frenchman's, Roberto managed to open a gap and stretch it lap after lap, taking the flag in P2 with a safe 6" advantage on the third classified car.


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Zeta's great day was completed by Roman Mavlanov, who once again showed consistent signs of progress. Despite being a rookie Roman was amazing in Qualifying, quick enough to post a 1'33"935 that was worth P11 on the grid. Then, in Race 1, the Russian youngster's getaway was mind-boggling and allowed him to climb as high as 5th place before the end of lap 1. In the first half of the race Mavlanov managed to keep his position lapping on the same pace as the race leader, but on lap 15 he did a mistake in Turn 1, spinning on corner exit and ending up in the gravel bed. Roman managed to rejoin but from then on his engine's temperatures started soaring, and he had no other option that cruising until the end of the race.

Roberto Merhi: Q1 - P5; R1 - P2
"What a race! Our car had already improved a lot for Qualifying but for the race we made some more changes that helped us to better cope with the kerbs, and it paid off. My start was really good, allowing me to immediately pass Ghiotto and Buller who had slower getaways. Then I used some DRS to keep Gasly at bay, and after that I just made the most of our great pace to open a gap on the competition. I'm really grateful to the team for having given me such an opportunity with such a great car, I hope we'll manage to be this quick tomorrow too".

Roman Mavlov: Q1 - P10; R1 - P14
"The beginning of my race was really good, I managed to pass lots of cars and then my pace was ok, enough to keep P5 without too many worries. Unluckily at half-race I did a mistake in Turn 1, downshifting to 1st gear and then spinning under acceleration. My sidepods were filled with gravel and without enough cooling my engine's temperatures went sky-high, leading the ECU to engage the 'Safe Mode'. With no power I did what I could to finish the race, but I want to be positive. The first half of it was really great, and considering that I keep improving from one session to another, I'd say that I can be confident for the season".

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