Albatec Begins Rallycross France bid with Maloigne in Essay

 This weekend (29-30 April) Dumfries based Albatec Racing begins its bid for Rallycross France honours in Essay, with Philippe Maloigne at the wheel of the team’s #21 SamShield-backed Peugeot 208 RX Supercar. The former motocross racer enjoyed a successful 2016 with the Dumfries team, taking two outright wins and numerous heat victories, alongside several outright fastest laps.

On his Albatec debut at this event last year, Philippe was quickly up to speed against a quality entry and reached the final where he finished sixth, and set the third fastest race lap. This year Philippe goes head-to-head with a further 17 Supercars in this the opening round, but expectations are for a grid of 25 cars for the later races.

Essay is among Philippe’s favourite tracks, but with overtaking difficult, a good start aboard his 600bhp two-litre 16v Peugeot 208, and grid position across the qualifying races is critical.

Philippe has been in action already this season, when he contested the opening round of the FIA European Rallycross Championship in Barcelona, to get himself race-ready for the first of ten rounds of Rallycross France. For Albatec a successful winter development programme and test schedule has brought the car firmly up to spec ahead of what looks like being another close-fought season.

Track action in Essay commences with practice at 09.45 on Saturday, with the opening two qualifying heats at 13.30 and 18.30. On Sunday warm-up starts at 08.00, followed by the third and fourth heats at 09.00 and 12.00 and the semi finals getting underway from 13.45.

Andy Scott, Team Principal Albatec Racing:

“We began our 2016 Rallycross France campaign at Essay and came away very pleased with sixth place last year, against incredibly tough competition. Now with a season in the Peugeot under his belt, two outright wins, and several guest appearances in Euro RX, I’m confident that Phillipe starts this weekend as strong contender for race victory. We’ve worked hard over the winter with a development programme and test schedule which we believe will reap benefits for Philippe in his full season assault on the championship.
“We can’t underestimate the quality of the entry though, Rallycross France is always incredibly competitive with a lot of very talented drivers, so as always it will be a tough season. However, with the work we’ve done, and Philippe’s experience in the car, we now head to the opening round feeling confident of a good result.”

Philippe Maloigne, Driver Albatec Racing:

“I’m very excited to be racing in Essay this weekend. It’s always fun to drive but is one of the hardest tracks on which to overtake, so a good start and grid position is important. The team has done a great job with the car over the off-season, and I’m looking forward to seeing how we go against the competition in France.
“Aside from testing, we’ve already raced in Spain this year – which served as a warm-up for the season which is always the best training you can do. We sadly didn’t get the best out of the experience, but the car was great, and I have even more confidence in it and feel more able to learn the limits.”


Images © McKlein Photography

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