Washout for Team Ireland in Dutch A1GP opener Zandvoort, Holland; On a day when only seven cars finished the Feature Race, A1 Team Ireland's hopes of a strong start to the A1GP World Cup of Motorsport season were dashed when Adam Carroll fell ...
Washout for Team Ireland in Dutch A1GP opener
Zandvoort, Holland; On a day when only seven cars finished the Feature Race, A1 Team Ireland's hopes of a strong start to the A1GP World Cup of Motorsport season were dashed when Adam Carroll fell victim to the atrocious conditions and spun out of both the Sprint Race and main event.
Starting from third place on the grid for the Sprint Race, Carroll joined the other competitors in lining up behind the Safety Car on the rain and wind affected Zandvoort Park Circuit. When the Safety Car was finally called in, Carroll's green Team Ireland car came through the final corner behind The Netherlands and New Zealand only for the 25 year old from Portadown to be caught out by the cold, soaking wet track. His car spun 180 degrees before being hit by the Team Monaco entry driven by Clivio Piccione. Damage to the Team Ireland car included the rear suspension and floor, which were soon repaired in readiness for the Feature Race.
Starting the Feature Race from 15th position on the grid, Carroll made strong progress in the early stages, moving up to 9th place after four laps only to spin off the track and into retirement. With conditions worsening all the time due to torrential rain, the Team Ireland car was not alone in falling foul of the treacherous track surface, but the result was no less disappointing after a promising performance yesterday in practice and qualifying.
"It was going ok and I was making good progress when the car just went from under me as I braked for Turn 6 and there was no way to catch it," said Carroll. "It was just like earlier on in the Sprint Race - the car let go so suddenly I couldn't react in time. Very disappointing for the team and I can't believe we came away with nothing."
"A disappointing day for the Team and a missed opportunity for Team Ireland on a day when the conditions and slightly lower entry for this opening race meant a good points haul was certainly possible," said Team Principal Mark Gallagher. "Adam explained the spin in the Sprint Race took him completely by surprise and it seemed to be the same thing later. We cannot afford to have weekends where we don't score points."
In spite of the disappointing start to the season, A1 Team Ireland had a successful build up to the series which included Thursday's 65 lap test at Snetterton Circuit and a highly competitive performance in practice and qualifying which saw the team at the top end of the time sheets throughout. Technical Director Gerry Hughes was overseeing the team for the first time, but the team was also helped this weekend by highly respected ex- Formula One Technical Director Gary Anderson, whose assistance and advice was invaluable at this stage of the season.