European Talent Cup Qualifying Estoril 2019

With 59 riders lining up for the first European Talent Cup race of the weekend, qualifying was Split into two groups.

After some thrilling qualifying and some controversy the front row of the grids will be: Jose Antonio Rueda Ruiz (Talent Team Estrella Galicia) on pole. He was the only rider to lap under 1:50. Alongside him on row one will be Fenton Seabright (Wilson Racing). Completing row one is Izan Guevara (Cuna de Campeones).

ETC Qualifying Estoril 2019 Group A

Group A session one

Group A went out at 10:40 for their first forty-minute session. Early morning showers have left the riders with a wet track despite the sun coming out. Juan Rodriguez Hernández (Cuna de Campeones) led for most of the session laying down a time of 1:58.329 on his seventh lap of the circuit. Izan Guevara went second quickest from the same team. his time of 1:58.731 put him 0.402 behind his teammate. A lap time of 1:59.057 put Ivan Ortola Diez (Sama Global Angel Nieto team) in third position.

Group A session two

In the second session the rain held off although track temperatures were still low. Jose Antonio Rueda, had been fourth in Q1. This time he held top spot for most of the session. His final lap time of 1:49.931 meant he was the only rider to break the 1:50 barrier. As in Q1 Izan Guevara finished second and Ivan Ortela third. Guevara clocked 1:50.335 putting him 0.404 behind the pole man, whilst Ortola was a further 0.464 seconds back. Q1 leader Juan Rodriguez was fourth, a second of the pole-sitter’s pace this time.

Jack Hart represented British Team Wilson Racing in the first qualifying group. His best lap time from the two qualifying periods of 1:53.425 placed him 20th in his group overall.

ETC Qualifying Estoril 2019 Group B

Group B session One

The track began to dry for the first qualifying session of the second group. As a result, as the session went on the times began to drop notably. Bester Capital Dubai rider Fermin Aldeguer had led the second group in qualifying for a long time. However, as the flag came out to signal the end of the forty minute qualifying period it was the Brazilian Diogo Moreira who was quickest. The Talent Team Estrella Galicia 0,0 riders put in a series of successive ever faster laps at the end of the session. His best time of 1:52.865 was a huge 1.543 seconds better than anyone else.

Second quickest was Keifer Racing’s Dirk Geiger with a 1:54.406 and he was followed by ARO Racing rider Alex Millán. The number 23 of Millán finished +1.782 behind Moreira.

Fenton Seabright (Wilson Racing) was a superb fifth fastest. he clocked a 1:55.192. This put him just ahead of 12-year-old Spanish talent David Alonso (Angel Nieto Team) in 6th. Seabright’s fellow British rider Joshua Whatley (KRP) ended the session in ninth and a lap time of 1:56.020.

Group B session two

In a blustery and cold second qualify session we witnessed a thrilling battle to lead the group. With 25 minutes of the session remaining Wilson Racing’s Fenton Seabright topped the time sheet with a 1:51.283 that put him 0.233 seconds ahead of Dirk Geiger. The lead changed many times with Q1 winner Diogo Moreira holding first place for a while. Álex Millán came through to take second briefly.

With five minutes remaining Seabright and Geiger came out of the pits to try and take the top spot. Seabright had dropped to sixth whilst off the circuit. Garcia had gone back to the top with a 1:50.202 and looked like he might be on to beat that on his final lap. He lost out towards the end of the lap. Seabright pushed hard as the chequered flag came out and came within 0.061 seconds of taking top spot. He had to settle for second but on a track, he had never seen until this weekend it was a fine result. Third quickest was Brazilian Moreira. Garcia’s was later disqualified from the session after Race Directioned sanctioned the team for being underweight.

Álex Millán, a former ETC race winner, ended Q2 in fourth place 0.596 behind the group winner. He will line up fifth on the grid for tomorrow’s race.

Josh Whatley also made a late pit stop and went on to finish 12th in the group. Whatley starts from 21st on the grid.

Luca De Vleeschauwer, riding with the help of Stuart Nicholls and Nykos Racing will race in the series 2 race. He, unfortunately, crashed in the second session of group A qualifying on a damp patch when all the riders were able to improve their times.

Jenny Ruokolainen from Finland and the sole female competitor ended her two qualifying sessions in 21st place, registering a lap time of 1:53.891. Dutch rider Justin Fokkert was 25th with a time of 1:56.254.