The first ever X30 Winter Cup takes place this weekend in Valencia and the event looks set to be a big one with a number of the World’s best in the X30 classes making their way to Spain to compete.
In this preview, we look at the potential, ones to watch and some new faces to the circuit
There is a reasonable grid of 19 drivers in the Junior class with recent rule changes forcing many to move up to the Senior class. This has opened the door for some potential new faces to run at the front and maybe even stand on the podium.
Angus Moulsdale is certainly one to watch. Angus competed in the X30 Euro Series last year with an impressive result of 6th at Zuera, he was also impressive at Kartmasters and his experience should help him get off to a quick start this weekend.
Unsurprisingly there are lots of Spanish drivers entered and one who could go well could be Mari Boya. Mari, who originally hails from Italy, went well at last year’s Rotax Max Challenge Grand Finals finishing 10th in the Mini Max class. It may a slight step up but having proven he can do it on the World stage I think Mari will challenge for the win this weekend.
Sticking with the Grand Finals when it came to Valencia back in 2014 one driver entered into the Junior class stood on the podium. That driver was Ruben Moya Lopez (ESP) who was 3rd in the Micro Max class. Ruben clearly knows the track well and should go well come rain or shine this weekend.
As for the other Brits, Alexander Walker and Josh Rattican, both I believe are making their European debuts with Josh just up from Cadets. However, they are both with experienced teams in Dan Holland Racing and Coles Racing so should improve as the weekend goes on.
As expected the Senior class holds a much bigger grid with 42 drivers entered for this weekend. Trying to pick a winner out has proved very difficult, but here are some drivers I think will go well this weekend.
I think the first driver to look at is Brett Ward. The reigning Vice Champion in X30 Euro Series Brett won’t be looking to settle for 2nd this time and I think he stands a very strong chance in winning. A fellow Brit, Jordan Brown-Nutley has just won the Rotax Winter Cup at the same track so high on confidence may take a famous double.
If we look to the home favourites, I’d say Carlos Leon could win this weekend. He was very strong in the X30 Euro Series and International Final last year and now on familiar territory may hold a slight advantage. Likewise, Alejandro Lahoz Lopez may be tipping himself to go on and win the event.
There are lots of drivers who have come over from the Rotax classes including the Strawberry Racing Team! They have brought with them Nicolas Schoell, Mark Kimber, Dean MacDonald and Jenson Butterfield. All very quick drivers!
When it comes to new Seniors I’ll be interested to see how Oliver Clarke gets on and watch out for Joey van Splunteren. The 2010 Rotax Max Euro Challenge Champion could be very fast this weekend!
There is a small entry in the Mini class, but it’s quality remains very high! One driver worth noting is American Ugo Ugochukwu. Ugo is a former Florida Winter Tour Champion so it’ll be interesting to see how he goes in the X30 Winter Cup.
As for the five Spaniards entered, well you’d have to think any of those could be podium contenders. It’ll be interesting to learn who the championship contenders will be when we hit round one in April!
Written by Chris McCarthy
Images courtesy of The RaceBox