Zandvoort: Team Pakistan Sunday report

Bad luck for A1 Team Pakistan at Zandvoortl A1 Team Pakistan was back in racing action today, six months after last season's finale in the UK. With the continued endorsement of President Pervez Musharraf, who has supported A1 Team Pakistan since...

Bad luck for A1 Team Pakistan at Zandvoortl

A1 Team Pakistan was back in racing action today, six months after last season's finale in the UK. With the continued endorsement of President Pervez Musharraf, who has supported A1 Team Pakistan since its launch in 2005, the team raced in the Netherlands today full of national pride and flying the flag for Pakistan.

Adam Khan was behind the wheel of the green and white car this weekend, making his first appearance at an A1GP race since the first season finale in China in April 2006. With all previous running at the track in wet conditions, today's dry track was a new experience for the A1 Team Pakistan driver, who makes his visit to Zandvoort this weekend. Starting from 16th on the grid, Khan made his first rolling start for 18 months and as the cars filed round the tight first corner, dropped to 18th place.

Determined to make up places, Khan began to close up on former F1 driver Alex Yoong in the Malaysian car, but was squeezed towards the pit wall and forced to slot back into 18th place. As the field settled into a steady race pace, Khan pulled out a gap on the Indonesian car behind him and began to challenge China ahead. By lap five, the gap was down to less than half a second, but with limited overtaking opportunities, Khan struggled to find a way past. By lap 10, the Pakistan car trapped behind a train of five cars headed by A1 Team Lebanon, which continued to the chequered flag, where the Pakistan car crossed the line just 0.2 seconds behind China and three seconds ahead of Canada in 18th place.

The weather stayed clear and bright for the afternoon's Feature race, which in a change to this seasons regulations, now includes two mandatory pit stops. Khan made an aggressive start as the lights went out, running side by side with A1 Team Lebanon for 15th place. However, the two cars made contact, damaging the front wing of the Pakistan car.

Despite the damage to his car, Khan refused to give up and passed China a lap later to take 17th place. Benefiting from a problem for A1 Team India, Pakistan were up to 16th place on lap 7. Due to the earlier damage, the team were forced to change the nose cone in the first pit stop, adding vital seconds to the teams stop. Khan rejoined in 20th place. A drive-through penalty for the incident with A1 Team Lebanon dashed any further chances to make up places and the team crossed the line 17th .

Reflecting on the first race of the season, Khan said, "It was quite frustrating today. In the first race I was stuck behind a train of slower cars, but just couldn't find the room to get past. In the Feature race contact with the Lebanese car early on damaged any chances we had which is a real shame as we had good pace. We're aiming to show our true potential at the next round in the Czech Republic."

A1 Team Pakistan Seatholder Arif Husain added, "Adam and the team showed great flashes of potential today, unfortunately great pace in the Feature race was left unfulfilled after contact with another car damaged the front wing. However, the team is entering a new era this season and I believe we have a great package. We are honoured to have the continued endorsement of President Musharraf whose support of the team means so much. A1 Team Pakistan is also proud to have Pakistan's premiere oil company Pakistan State Oil and the leading national food manufacturer, Laziza supporting the team this season in the A1GP World Cup of Motorsport. We hope to make all our supporters and fans proud at the next round in the Czech Republic in two weeks time."

-credit: a1teampak.com

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About this article
Series A1GP
Drivers Alex Yoong , Adam Langley-Khan