Totale frustration pour Maxime Martin !

Totale frustration pour Maxime Martin !

11.09.2007: Totale frustration pour Maxime Martin !

Eurocup Mégane Trophy / 4. Donington (GB)

Après une première partie de saison marquée par trois meetings seulement, l'Eurocup Mégane Trophy a fait sa rentrée ce week-end sur le tracé de Donington, où Maxime Martin et l'ensemble du Boutsen Energy Racing avaient hâte d'en découdre, histoire de démontrer une pointe de vitesse évidente depuis le début de la compétition. Confirmation de l'adaptation très rapide de Maxime à la Mégane dès les différents tests collectifs, au cours desquels le pilote belge décrochait à deux reprises un excellent 2ème meilleur chrono, à un dixième de seconde à peine du Français Fabrice Walfisch.

Et Martin de remettre cela lors des qualifications, avec un nouveau 2ème meilleur temps, qui lui valait une place en première ligne lors de chacune des deux manches. Impressionnant…

Disputée samedi après-midi, la première des deux courses ne faisait que confirmer la supériorité de Fabrice Walfisch et Maxime Martin, qui cadenassaient les deux premières places. Et cette fois, le Boutsen Energy Racing négociait parfaitement le cap toujours délicat du pit-stop, le Belge pointant toujours au 2ème rang après son passage dans la pitlane. "Course parfaite, effectivement… jusqu'à l'avant-dernier tour", explique un Maxime dépité.

"De manière totalement inattendue, je suis tombé en panne d'essence ! Et six ou sept autres pilotes ont connu le même problème, dont le leader Walfisch. Comment expliquer une telle débâcle ? Il semblerait que la consommation idéale calculée par la télémétrie ne correspondait pas à la réalité ! J'ai terminé au ralenti, avec une voiture dont le moteur hoquetait. Lahaye a gagné la course devant Petiz, mais ce dernier ne pointait qu'en 7ème ou 8ème position avait l'hécatombe finale…"

Une fois de plus, Maxime Martin venait de démontrer sa formidable pointe de vitesse, et une fois encore, la malchance s'en était mêlée. Avec un point positif cependant… "Samedi, tous les autres pilotes ont entamé la première manche avec un train de pneus neufs.

Pas moi… J'ai préféré conserver cet avantage pour le dimanche, afin de faire la différence. Et comme j'allais de nouveau partir depuis la première ligne, tous les espoirs étaient permis. Inutile de préciser que cette fois, le team était décidé à surveiller de près la consommation en carburant…"

Auteur d'un envol parfait, Maxime virait en tête au premier freinage, pour ensuite creuser l'écart sur le reste du peloton. "Après 7 tours, je comptais plus de 2 secondes d'avance sur le reste de la meute, et tout se présentait pour le mieux. La voiture de sécurité est alors montée en piste, et le team a préféré ne pas me faire rentrer au stand, compte tenu des problèmes de consommation de la veille. Ils estimaient qu'en faisant le plein à ce moment, il m'était impossible de rallier l'arrivée…"

Lors du restart, le pilote belge reprenait son envolée là où il l'avait laissée, en creusant de nouveau le trou sur des suivants pas vraiment immédiats. Alors qu'il caracolait de nouveau en tête, Maxime effectuait son pit-stop, qui se passait sans le moindre problème… sauf qu'il réapparaissait en piste au 8ème rang !

"Et le pire de tout, c'est que je n'ai pas d'explication", pestait l'infortuné pilote. "Les concurrents qui sont repassés par la pitlane lors de la neutralisation en début de course ont pu aller jusqu'au bout sans rencontrer de soucis de consommation !

Je n'y comprends plus rien ! Ce n'est pas à moi à effectuer de savants calculs, mais là, je me demande où est l'explication. J'ai signé le meilleur tour en course en fin de parcours, et j'ai décroché la 7ème place finale à l'arrachée, mais quelle frustration ! Jamais, en dominant de la sorte, je ne m'attendais à terminer aussi loin…"

Terrible désillusion donc au sein du Boutsen Energy Racing, qui ne peut que fixer rendez-vous à tout le monde à Magny-Cours, pour une revanche que l'on espère éclatante…

 

 

- Vincent Franssen , photo Jacques Létihon -

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11.09.2007 / MaP

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