Durban: Team France Sunday notes

Thank you Loïc! After a hard-fought weekend A1 Team France leaves South Africa with another podium finish, and is still in second place in the 2007-2008 A1 GP Championship. In the light of yesterday's qualifying, it is an excellent result ...

Thank you Loïc!

After a hard-fought weekend A1 Team France leaves South Africa with another podium finish, and is still in second place in the 2007-2008 A1 GP Championship. In the light of yesterday's qualifying, it is an excellent result achieved thanks to the impeccable work carried out by the whole team.

Starting the Sprint Race from 17th place on the grid, Loïc Duval knew that scoring points was going to be difficult. He had fought his way up to ninth when the race was red-flagged after a collision between the Dutch and German teams' cars. Unfortunately, the regulations state that the classification is that of the lap previous to the neutralisation of the race, so the team finished eleventh.

In the Feature Race, A1 Team France's strategy enabled its driver to pull back several places. Loïc was eighth at the end of the first lap, then fourth after his first pitstop, and after his final one he rejoined in 3rd place. Canada's off enabled him to move up another position with a few minutes to go to the end of a race that was also red-flagged before its scheduled finish. The team bagged 12 points for 2nd place, allowing it to overtake New Zealand in the championship, and it is now only ten behind Switzerland, the new leader. The 2 races in Durban were the last for Loïc Duval in the A1Team France car.

The Frenchman's championship obligations in Japan mean that he will no longer be available to drive for the team, which would like to express its gratitude to him for his involvement, his professionalism and his availability. Thank you, Loïc!

Olivier Panis, sporting director: "Our aim today was to limit the damage and we did even better than that; we achieved a rostrum finish and we're still in second place in the championship. Our team did a really great job today. These two races were also Loïc's last ones for us this year. We'd like to thank him for his contribution, and we hope to continue the series of good results which he started."

Loïc Duval: "The weekend finished better than it started! It was almost impossible to score points starting from seventeenth place in the Sprint Race, but it was a close-run thing. In the Feature Race I pushed hard all the way, and thanks to a perfect strategy we made it onto the podium. I'm leaving A1 Team France with the feeling that I've done my job, and I hope that we will win the title at the end of the season: we deserve to! I'd like to express my gratitude to all the A1 Team France members and supporters, thanks to whom the 2007-08 adventure's been unique from both a sporting and human point of view."

-credit: team france

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About this article
Series A1GP
Drivers Olivier Panis , Loic Duval