Preview: Hockenheim set to host absorbing NEC title decider

The iconic Hockenheimring will play host to the 2018 Formula Renault Northern European Cup (NEC) title decider this weekend [22-23 September], with three drivers – each from a different team – in contention for the top prize.

Doureid Ghattas arrives at his second consecutive home event with a commanding 47-point advantage in the standings after the Anders Motorsport racer made it four victories in a row last time out at the Nurburgring.

On both occasions the German battled past title rival Gabriel Gandulia (R-ace GP) to claim the honours, the second a fantastic side-by-side contest between the pair through the Mercedes Arena.

That performance – coupled with then-closest challenger Phil Hill suffering an unfortunate retirement – means the Formula 4 graduate need only finish either race at the 2.8 mile Baden-Wurttemberg venue to join a long list of illustrious names in lifting the NEC crown.

Gandulia now heads up the chasing pack, albeit needing a small miracle to deny Ghattas the title in his first full season of international single-seater racing.

For Hill, Hockenheim marks the start of his tenure with an expanded ScoRace Team, with Sharon Scolari on the opposite side of the awning.

The Swiss became the first female podium finisher in the NEC’s 13-year history in the Eifel Mountains after capitalising to take the runner-up spot in the finale.

She will look to end the campaign on a high after a mixed debut season, before the focus switches to 2019.

The change also means R-ace GP stand on the brink of securing back-to-back Teams’ titles, with the reduced Anders entry still

Qualifying will kick off the competitive action at 09:00 CEST on Saturday morning before the opening race at 13:35. The format repeats the following day at 09:45 and 16:35 respectively.

As usual, the races will be available to live stream through the Renault Sport Series’ social media channels and the official Formula Renault YouTube page. Session reports are available throughout the weekend at www.necup.com.