Great Britain Celebrates First A1GP Victory in Mexico City Mexico City, Sunday 25 March, 2007 -- Oliver Jarvis led A1 Team Great Britain to its first ever A1GP World Cup of Motorsport victory on Sunday with a commanding performance in Round 9's...
Great Britain Celebrates First A1GP Victory in Mexico City
Mexico City, Sunday 25 March, 2007 -- Oliver Jarvis led A1 Team Great Britain to its first ever A1GP World Cup of Motorsport victory on Sunday with a commanding performance in Round 9's Feature race at the Autodromo Hermanos Rodriquez in Mexico City. The 23-year-old from Cambridgeshire led all but eight laps in this afternoon's 45-lap main event to follow up his second place Sprint race podium from the morning with the sweet taste of victory in the Feature.
Sunday morning's 20-minute Sprint race saw Jarvis keep pace with pole-sitter Alex Yoong for Malaysia as they charged to the green flag from a creeping rolling start. Stealing second from Germany, Oliver left a scene of carnage firmly in his mirrors as the home-favorite, Mexico's Salvador Duran, tagged Brazilian Champ Car veteran Bruno Junqueira into a heart-stopping sideways spin.
While the expected Safety Car period failed to materialize, Jarvis concentrated on giving chase to Yoong ahead. Narrowing the gap to the ex-Formula One racer to 1.4 seconds on lap eight, both Yoong and Jarvis settled for securing front-row Feature starts, the Malaysian taking the chequered flag four laps later ahead of his British rival with Australia's Ian Dyk rounding out the Sprint race podium.
Jarvis, who scored a Feature race podium in China on his series debut last November, vowed to go one better heading into the afternoon in Mexico. He wasted little time in fulfilling his promise as he rocketed off the line to leave pole-sitter Alex Yoong trailing in his wake down the monstrous 1km main-straight. With a clear track ahead of him the 2005 McLaren Autosport BRDC Young Driver of the Year set to work edging out an advantage over Jonathan Summerton in the A1 Team USA car.
With the gap up to 1.5 seconds by lap nine, Jarvis darted down pit-lane, the British team the first to make their mandatory stop with a lightening fast tyre change executed by Jarvis' pit-crew. While the running order shuffled through as his rivals followed suit, Jarvis assumed the lead again on lap 18 and never looked like surrendering it despite some late race pressure from Summerton.
Having maintained a healthy 3.5 second gap over his American rival through much of the race, with 10 laps to go Summerton began to close in on Jarvis. Down to 2.2 seconds with five laps to the chequered, then 1.4 seconds at the start of the final lap, Summerton gave it his all but he couldn't crack the steely reserve and the hunger to win demonstrated by Jarvis. Crossing the start-finish line Oliver punched the air with delight as Great Britain finally broke its duck to score a long awaited A1GP win, the USA duly sealing second with Adrian Zaugg for South Africa in third.
"This is just a fantastic result for the whole team and a great boost ahead of our return to home soil for the A1GP season finale at Brands Hatch next month," said a jubilant Oliver Jarvis. "Everyone's worked so hard for this result and it's a great reward for everyone's efforts. Jonathan pushed really hard at the end but I felt I had everything under control through to the chequered. Hopefully it won't be so long now until the next British win!"
-credit: team gbr