A1 Team Germany defends championship lead in Brno The Willi Weber managed A1 Team Germany defended its championship lead at the second round of the A1 Grand Prix Series in Brno, Czech Republic. Despite retiring from the sprint race, nominated ...
A1 Team Germany defends championship lead in Brno
The Willi Weber managed A1 Team Germany defended its championship lead at the second round of the A1 Grand Prix Series in Brno, Czech Republic. Despite retiring from the sprint race, nominated driver Nicolas Hülkenberg managed to climb from sixteenth on the grid to fourth at the finish after putting in an impressive display in the main race. A1 Team Germany remains at the head of the 23 nation field in the World Cup of Motorsport with a one-point advantage over Mexico.
After qualifying on the front row for the sprint, Nico Hülkenberg's race only lasted a few hundred metres: The A1 Team New Zealand car collided with the German A1 GP car just after the rolling start. Both the German and New Zealand cars retired. The David Sears Motorsport race team had their work cut out before the main race - the team rose to the occasion and changed various suspension components, a driveshaft and the side-pods of the heavily damaged German car to enable the car to take the grid.
Nico Hülkenberg started the main race from 16th place in the 520 hp A1 Grand Prix car. The "star of tomorrow" from Emmerich wasted no time in starting his fight back - on the opening lap he forged past seven rivals. A1 Team Germany briefly lost two positions, which it duly reclaimed before the end of the sixth lap. After the pit-stop on lap ten Hülkenberg once again made up positions and was running in fifth place from lap 16. As A1 Team Canada made a mistake four laps before the chequered flag, the 19-year old German driver used his chance and jumped up another place. Series newcomer Nico Hülkenberg not only defended his championship lead for A1 Team Germany as a result, but also continued his personal success streak: The Rhinelander has been in the top four this season every time he has seen the chequered flag.
"A fantastic result bearing in mind how unlucky we were in the sprint race after the New Zealander Jonny Reid jinked to the left, hit my car and I ran out of road. Afterwards, the mechanics really did have a huge amount of work, which they sorted perfectly. They gave me a beautifully handling car again - thank you very much guys! I was able to attack immediately in the main race and overtook seven cars. I then lost two places to the Brazilian and New Zealand drivers, but I had overtaken them again by the completion of the sixth lap. I was able to get past the teams from Great Britain and the Netherlands in the pit lane owing to the excellent pit stop my team made. I climbed back up to fifth place after. I was also able to overtake the Canadian James Hinchcliffe after he made a mistake. I hadn't dreamt of finishing fourth before the race - it was absolutely fantastic."
"Nico was impressive in both qualifying and in the race in Brno. It's a shame that he went away from the sprint empty handed after such a strong showing this weekend. I was even more impressed with the way he carved through the field. His excellent performance bode well for the future. Nominating him for our team was a good move. The weekend ended on a good note, since A1 Team Germany travels to the next race as championship leader."
10 to 12 November 2006, Beijing (China)
-credit: team germany