Jani Hjerppe Claims RMEC Title 2016-17
With the final round at the Yas Marina Circuit, the Radical Middle East Cup concluded one of the most exciting seasons in the history of the championship. The extremely hot weather during the two decisive races made for an additional challenge for all participants and after final heat, Jani Hjerrpe (Dream Racing) secured the championship following two further victories, keeping his closest competitor Sergey Shalunov (Arloid Racing) at bay. The two rivals performed at the highest level, making for exciting races for all the spectators until the last chequered flag.
The weekend started perfectly for the Flying Finn, who secured the pole position in both qualifying sessions, while Shalunov struggled a bit and would start the races from 5th and 4th position respectively. In Race 1 the Russian driver furthermore had to deal with an extended pit stop, due to his victory in the previous race. With this big handicap Shalunov was not able to catch one of the three steps on the podium in Race 1 and Hjerppe recorded his sixth victory of the season. Behind the Hjerppe, the duo of Necchi-Lutter ended second after a very consistent race with Al Nusif-Elgammal finishing the race in third position. In Race 2, Shalunov had to win to keep is title-dreams alive but Hjerppe was once again the quickest on track again claiming the top step on the podium. Behind him, Shalunov and again Al Nusif – Elgammal took the chequered flag in P2 and P3 respectively.
Jani Hjerppe: “It has been a very tough season until the end. Shalunov was always quick and I am pleased to have beaten such an experienced and always fair driver. Now I look forward to the European Masters season.”
Sergey Shalunov: “Jani deserved the victory. I tried my best to fight for the title and I was very close to it. The RMEC is a very interesting series with many fast drivers and I am happy to have been in contention for the title for the whole season, proving my speed as one of the quickest drivers on the grid. I’ll return and try again next year!”