Stoffel Vandoorne closed the points deficit to Formula Renault 3.5 championship leader Kevin Magnussen to just four with a dominant victory in race one at Moscow Raceway.
Polesitter Vandoorne executed a perfect race. After a faultless getaway, the McLaren junior racer opened a 1.4-second lead at the completion of the first lap.
A broken exhaust prevented second-place finisher Antonio Felix da Costa of Arden Caterham from mounting a threat, as a series of fastest laps by Vandoorne extended his Fortec car's advantage to a comfortable 6.7s at the checkered flag.
"This track is really hard to overtake on," said Vandoorne, "so pole was crucial. At the start I was able to create a bit of a gap, and then I could gradually drive away.
"We went a little bit in the wrong direction in the second collective test, I have to say well done to the team for making improvements overnight and getting on top of everything."
Tech 1 racer Nigel Melker survived a charging performance from Will Stevens to take the final place on the podium. In a race of few overtaking maneuvers, Stevens made admirable progress from seventh on the grid. nThe Briton risked a bold move pass debutant Will Buller for fourth place at the conclusion of lap seven. But Buller provided Stevens with plenty of margin once Stevens' commitment to late-braking was clear, and the Zeta Corse racer took to the last corner's asphalt run-off area to be certain to avoid a collision.
Buller was unable to match the pace of the leaders, but produced an impressive debut performance to hold a four-car queue led by Andre Negrao at bay for the duration of the race.
Magnussen finished one place outside of the points in 11th. The Dane had been relegated from third to 17th on the grid after losing his two fastest laps for blocking in qualifying.
The DAMS driver made up most of his ground away on the opening lap, before passing team-mate Norman Nato for 12th on lap two. Magnussen would spend the remainder of the race tucked up on Marco Sorensen's gearbox.
The race was marred by a heavy shunt for SMP by Comtec racer Lucas Foresti, who fortunately escaped from his car unaided after being pitched onto his rollbar at high speed. The Brazilian had entered Turn 9 from the outside Michelin-to-Michelin with Nikolay Martksenko. A touch of wheels sent both drivers into retirement, although there was little dispute that Foresti suffered the more spectacular exit.