Sepang: Team Germany Friday notes

Sixth place for A1 Team Germany in opening sessions Michael Ammermuller made a good debut for Willi Weber's A1 Team Germany. On the third weekend of the A1 GP World Cup of Motorsport season in Malaysia, the 21-year old racing driver from Pocking...

Sixth place for A1 Team Germany in opening sessions

Michael Ammermuller made a good debut for Willi Weber's A1 Team Germany. On the third weekend of the A1 GP World Cup of Motorsport season in Malaysia, the 21-year old racing driver from Pocking close to Passau steered the German team's powerful 520 hp race car to sixth place in second free practice on Friday.

Ammermuller returned to the cockpit of the A1GP race car after more than one year since his only test in August 2006. Unlike many of his competitors, who had competed in Malaysia last year, the newcomer had to start by learning the 5.543 kilometre Sepang circuit. Complicating matters even further was the fact that the racer from Lower Bavaria hardly turned a wheel during the "Rookie Test" reserved exclusively for newcomers. "The engine died on the first lap," diagnosed Ammermuller after a few hundred metres. The aluminium V8 power unit only ran as reliably as accustomed after the Zytek engineers had changed the entire electronic system.

Despite losing the 50 minute practice session in the morning, the young talent was able to demonstrate his abilities immediately in second free practice: He posted the sixth fastest time with a lap of 1m50.641s and was only 34 hundredths-of-a-second slower than championship leader New Zealand in fourth place. "I'm pleased with this result since it is more than we could have hoped for after the 'Rookie Test'," explained Michael Ammermuller. "After all, I had to get used to the behaviour of the car again on new tyres. We improved the set-up quite a lot in the first 60 minutes."

The "star of tomorrow" enjoyed the challenge of the new-to-him circuit close to Kuala Lumpur. "It's really an interesting track," said an impressed Ammermuller. "So many fast corners are a lot of fun. It'll be interesting to see how the two races on this track develop."

However, the 22 competing nations must first qualify for the two starting grids. On Saturday only two fastest laps are taken respectively to determine the grid for the sprint race and the following feature race.

-credit: germany/speedpool.com

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Series A1GP
Drivers Michael Ammermüller