After clash with his teammate: Martin Doubek back on Victory Lane in Spain

In 2021, Martin Doubek started his EuroNASCAR 2 title winning season with a victory in the NASCAR GP Spain at Circuit Ricardo Tormo. Three years later, the Hendriks Motorsport star was chasing for the opportunity to become the first two-time champion in the division and Valencia could once again be the start of the realization for his dreams. The Czech driver took the lead from teammate Gil Linster in the opening lap but they clashed at the exit of turn 1. Afterwards he survived one Full Course Yellow period to take home his eighth win in the most unpredictable division of EuroNASCAR.

Doubek made a good getaway at the start and led all 15 laps. It wasn’t an easy victory for the former champion as his opponents managed to keep the pressure on. Race Art Technology’s Thomas Toffel provided the biggest challenge initially before Patrick Schober gained the advantage late in the race. Neither of them ultimately had the speed needed to find a way past the Czech driver, who took the checkered flag 1.938 seconds ahead of Schober in the #3 RDV Competition Ford.

“It was really good from the start to finish, so I’m really happy,” said Doubek in the Victory Lane. “I think this win is my first in two and a half years, so I hope that the fans enjoyed it! I don’t know what happened in the first turn, but it was on the straight and not on the corner. I have to check on the video, but I had a good start and was entering the first corner.”

Toffel crossed the line in third, but the Swiss driver just missed out on the podium after he received a five-second time penalty for track limits infringements. This promoted Claudio Cappelli up to third, his first top-3 finish since Zolder in 2022. Cappelli also took home the victory in the Legend Trophy for drivers aged 40 and more and enjoyed a good battle with Thomas Dombrowski in the early stages of the race.

Dombrowski maintained a steady pace and claimed fifth ahead of Japanese driver Kenko Miura, who scored a second place finish in the Legend Trophy special classification. Julien Rehberg was extremely happy with his result, finishing as the top Rookie Trophy driver in seventh and exceeding his expectations – he had been aiming for a top-20 finish on his debut. Jack Davidson was eighth ahead of Victor Neumann and Roberto Benedetti, second and third in Rookie and Legend Trophy respectively. Mario Ercoli rounded out the Rookie Trophy top-3 in eleventh place while Arianna Casoli took the top spot in the Lady Trophy in 18th position.

Linster’s contact with Doubek on the opening lap caused a puncture for the Luxembourger driver, forcing him to make a pit stop to change the deflated tire. He was understandably not happy with his teammate as it took him out of race winning contention before it began, but he will be starting Race 2 from Pole Position after he set the fastest lap of the race.

“From my side, I was thinking that we’re starting the season fairly and I told you before the race that the fights were actually quite fair with him,” stated Linster after the race. “He was just too aggressive. He knows that he cannot beat me on the race track. That was his only chance to win the race today. It was a very stupid move. If we are on the same team, have the same guys working on our cars and then do such a stupid move on turn 2, like come on, you don’t do it.”

One more race awaits the drivers in both EuroNASCAR PRO and EuroNASCAR 2 as they will be back on track for Race 2 of the 2024 NASCAR GP Spain on Sunday. EuroNASCAR 2 will hit the track first at 10:10 CEST while EuroNASCAR PRO will provide the finale of the weekend at 13:55 CEST. All races can be watched live on EuroNASCAR’s YouTube channel and numerous TV channels around the world.

NWES PR