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Aurelien Panis crowned Andros e-Trophy champion

Aurelien Panis has been crowned the 2019-20 Andros e-Trophy champion after a nail-biting season finale at Super Besse.

Panis secured the title after qualifying second for the last race of the season while championship rival Jean-Baptiste Dubourg could only manage fifth.

The Audi driver capped off his season with victory in the race, beating Sebastien Loeb to the line by just 0.8s.

Panis stormed away from the grid to snatch the race lead off the line, but spent the race defending against Loeb. Loeb was rarely less than half a second behind Panis and the pair quickly broke away from the rest of the field.

Treacherous conditions caught a number of drivers out, and Loeb’s overtaking opportunities became more and more limited every lap as another driver would come to a stop on track.

Berthon was the first driver to retire from the race on just the second lap. Matthieu Vaxiviere was next. Having challenged Benjamin Riviere for third the championship newcomer retired two laps before the chequered flag.

Loeb continued to push hard but a near-spin in the closing stages of the race dropped him back slightly and Panis was clear to take the last victory of the season.

Riviere held on to take third, while Dubourg – who stalled on the grid and was almost a lap down throughout the race – ran into a snowbank on the penultimate lap.

In the second final, Yann Ehrlacher was victorious after Nico Prost span out of the lead midway through the race. The pair had broken away from the rest of the field and Ehrlacher was beginning to challenge for the lead when Prost span.

Though the Renault driver was able to get going again, he fell to the back of the field and soon returned to the paddock.

Ehrlacher remained unchallenged for the rest of the race and took the win ahead of Franck Lagorce and Christophe Ferrier.

Olivier Pernaut and Olivier Panis completed the order.

Image courtesy of Bruno Bade

Bethonie Waring

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