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WINFIELD RACING SCHOOL - Press release n°4

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Thanks to an exceptional cohort and meticulous organisation, the 2019 Volant Winfield fulfilled all its objectives and has rewarded a talented young kart racer. At the Paul Ricard circuit, Jules Mettetal (16 years old) impressed the jury by his speed in a Final with very international appeal and a extremely high standard. This season the Bourguignon driver will be at the start of the French F4 FIA Championship organised by the FFSA Academy and is the 25th winner of the Volant Winfield at Le Castellet. Reserved for the youngest drivers, the Winfield Trophy was awarded to Isack Hadjar and the prize for the top female was awarded to Doriane Pin.


Training, selection and support

Before the final selection, the Volant Winfield gave the drivers training of very high quality, supervised by many experts. "A career is not built solely on performance, but includes the ability of a driver to become a complete champion, physically, professionally and mentally. Our selection process has strongly integrated the opportunities provided to our young drivers over the three days," commented Frédéric Garcia. "The winners of the 2018 edition were there to illustrate our requirements. The Brazilian Caio Collet became F4 FIA French Champion in the Winfield colours and is now part of the Renault Sport Academy programme. As for Théo Pourchaire, winner of the Winfield Trophy last year, he then won the French F4 Junior Championship and has just joined the Sauber Racing Team."


"We represent a bridge between karting and single-seaters," continued the Winfield Group President. "Our role does not stop on the evening of the Volant. We support the champions we select, to give them the best opportunity to win in F4 and try to place them in a development programme."

 

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Sporting fairness

On 23rd to 25th February 2019, the 18 drivers selected - from 71 candidates - took advantage of the world-class infrastructure of the Paul Ricard circuit, current host of the Formula 1 French Grand Prix. "I was impressed by everything that Winfield Racing School has put in place during these three days," confirmed Callum Bradshaw, a top-level British kart racer. "Winfield has made us aware of all the skills a driver needs to have if he wants to become a motorsports pro. I very much appreciated the efforts made to ensure the greatest possible fairness. We all did the same number of laps, using identical cars and tyres. Even ballast was installed to equalise the weight of the drivers. Thanks to the successive evaluations and the training received, we were in the best condition to attack the final selection test."

 

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A complicated choice

After the official timed sessions, the jury deliberated for a long time to select the finalists. "The work of the qualified instructors, viewing the onboard cameras and data acquisition analysis caused the young drivers to progress dramatically. In the end, many of them set excellent times. Our choice was difficult," said Jarno Trulli, former Formula 1 driver and 2019 panel member." There were many factors to consider, including the way they behaved off the track. Among the fastest drivers, two of them were very close and we decided to increase the number of finalists to four instead of three." Callum Bradshaw (GBN, 17), Hadrien David (FRA, 15) years), Nicky Hays (USA, 17 years old) and Jules Mettetal (16 years old) won their ticket for the Final, taking place in ideal weather conditions.

 

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A very high level Final

Already the fastest in the morning driving the Mygale-Renault FIA F4 equipped with Pirelli tyres, Jules Mettetal set the fastest time of the first session. The four contenders then swapped cars, but Jules confirmed his determination, despite smaller gaps. The American Nicky Hays put the Frenchman under pressure by setting the best lap in the third session. In the Final, Jules Mettetal increased his pace and took the advantage, this time ahead of Hadrien David after strong progress.


"The four finalists have shown that they already have a lot of talent and great potential," said Mike Knight, founder of Winfield School in 1964 and President of the Jury. "It was extremely tight and the jury deliberated extensively by analysing all the data we collected during the three days of training. In the end, Jules Mettetal deserved this success. He knew perfectly how to exploit his set of new tyres from the first run. Then he was very mentally strong, while maintaining a steady pace. However, our choice was not guided solely by the timing data, both for the selection of the finalists and for the choice of the winner. During the off-track activities, Jules was regularly in the top five of the various evaluations, with an excellent score in the multiple-choice paper. It only reinforced our decision."

 

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"A great pride in representing Winfield"

Third in the 2016 French Cup for Cadet and finalist in the 2017 FIA Karting World Junior Championship, Jules Mettetal grinned at the awards ceremony. "I am very proud and it is a great joy to win this Volant, and I thank Winfield and its partners for giving me the opportunity to compete in the 2019 FIA French F4 Championship," said Jules. "My 2019 racing programme was not finalised before this Volant and I think it will be a great springboard for my career. Today, I'm already focused on the goal of winning the title at the end of the season."

 

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Reserved for the youngest drivers, the Winfield Trophy was won by Isack Hadjar. With remarkable progress on the track and very close to the finalists in performance, the Frenchman won two days of testing with the FFSA Academy and the last F4 race at Paul Ricard.


The Best Female Award, awarded in partnership with the FIA Women in Motorsport Commission, went to Doriane Pin. "38 years after Cathy Muller won the Volant Winfield, we are pleased to have entered into a partnership with the FIA Commission," commented Anne-Charlotte Rémy, general manager of Winfield Racing School. "Doriane will benefit from two days of Formula 4 testing at the Paul Ricard Circuit with the FFSA Academy, as well as a day of training including simulator work, physical and mental preparation sessions, and coaching with Winfield Racing School. "


The work is just beginning for Jules Mettetal, who can count on the assistance of the staff of Winfield to achieve his objectives ..

 

 

© Photos Winfield - Thomas Fenetre 

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