Latest news – November 6, 2020
The drivers and teams battled to the very end for the first two titles and the top 3 in the classifications at the Ligier European Series season-finale at the Algarve International Circuit on October 30 and 31, 2020.
Ligier JS2 R: Sébastien Baud and Cool Racing crowned, Natan Bihel and M Racing runner-up
In the GT category, two drivers and two teams were in contention for the first-ever titles in JS2 R: Sébastien Baud behind the wheel of the #74 Cool Racing entry (139 points) and Natan Bihel at the controls of the #66 from M Racing (105 points). While Sébastien had a commanding lead, Natan could still win the title. For Mathieu Martins in the #86 M Racing Ligier, the position of runner-up was within his grasp (88 points).
And they gave it everything they had in the two races of the final Heat of the season on the very fast and undulating Portimao circuit. Natan Bihel fought right up to the finish, but Mathieu Martins wasn’t about to make anything easy for him. In what was a fine battle in race one Natan went on for the win and Mathieu finished second. In race two, the battle was even more thrilling and Mathieu got his revenge.
With a 34-point lead, Sébastien Baud could have played it safe. But, that’s not how he became the man to beat in 2020 and he finished his campaign with two trips to the podium, which was enough for him to become the first champion in the Ligier JS2 R category. His season total includes, four wins, (at the two heats at Circuit Paul Ricard) and four top three finishes (two at Spa-Francorchamps and two at Portimao). Sébastien picks up the first endurance title of his career. He also gives his Cool Racing team its first Team Title.
“I got a very good start to the season with four victories in the two races at Circuit Paul Ricard,” says Sébastien. “I had never raced at Spa-Francorchamps before but we did very well to make it on to the podium twice. Then at Monza we had some mechanical problems that prevented us from winning the title in Italy. But we didn’t give up and we arrived for the final in Portimao with a 34-point lead. The goal for me was to finish both races. I wanted to do this cleanly and I still scored two podiums with two third place finishes with some nice battles. The strategy was respected: to give everything at the beginning of the season to pull away and manage my lead at the end of the season. I really enjoyed being behind the wheel of the Ligier JS2 R. It’s a small GT that’s very light and a lot of fun. With one-hour races, there is also a very interesting strategy aspect, especially for tyre management. It’s been a great season and I couldn’t be any happier.”
Natan Bihel and M Racing finish runner-up in the category. Just 17 points behind, Mathieu Martins and M Racing finish third in the championship.
For the JS2 R drivers general classification, CLICK HERE
For the JS2 R teams general classification, CLICK HERE
Ligier JS P4 Andrea Dromedari and HP Racing Team Champions, Kévin Balthazar and Milo Racing runner-up
In the Ligier JS P4 category, Andrea Dromedari and HP Racing Team take the first title in the category with three wins, five second places and three third places.
Absent from round two at Le Castellet, Kévin Balthazar and Milo Racing could not make up lost ground. Despite two terrific wins in the final weekend of the year, they finish second in the championship.
“Italian do it better, that’s the first thing I want to say, exclaims Andrea with a broad smile! It was a difficult and very strange season. Let me thank my team, my family, my wife and my son. I’d like to dedicate this title to my mum who passed away last year. I also want to congratulate Kévin Balthazar who has been very fast all season. I’m very happy to win the very first title of the series. My first title with the Ligier JS P4. It’s a very fast car, a lovely car. I think that every gentlemen driver who want to have a first taste of endurance racing can drive this car. It’s very fun to drive. I’m really happy to have clinched the title!”
For the JS P4 drivers general classification, CLICK HERE
For the JS P4 teams general classification, CLICK HERE