A TESTING DAY AT ORAN PARK FOR ALAJAJIAN FOLLOWS STRONG A1 TEST IN GREAT BRITAIN
Sydney driver Chris Alajajian has come out of one of the busiest weeks of his racing career looking to the future, despite a tough run in the weekend's Fujitsu V8 Supercar Championship round at Oran Park Raceway.
The 20-year-old resident of Sydney's North Shore flew to Snetterton Raceway in Great Britain last week to test for Team Lebanon in the A1GP World Cup of Motorsport series, before jetting back into Sydney in time for the fifth round of the Fujitsu V8s at the Oran Park circuit, West of Sydney.
The test in the 550hp A1GP car was recognition of Alajajian's prowess behind the wheel of open-wheeled cars, Chris finishing as high as second in the opening round of this years Australian F3 championship -- run in conjunction with the Australian leg of the international series at Eastern Creek in February this year.
Whilst his rain-interrupted weekend at Oran Park wasn't what he was hoping for, Alajajian said that the A1GP experience was one to remember.
"It was fantastic to get the invitation," he said.
"When you get offers like that you don't turn them down. I've been in touch with people from A1GP for some time so it was great to get a chance to drive one of the cars for A1 Team Lebanon.
"The cars are awesome to drive and I completely enjoyed the experience. The team seemed happy with my performance and I think I got a lot out of the experience."
Alajajian qualified 14th for the Fujitsu V8 Supercar round in his Holden Commodore, just 1.1 seconds from pole position in the strong 30-car field.
After making a strong start Alajajian's car unexpectedly veered hard right under braking for turn three and left the young driver out of control. The #43 car made contact with Owen Kelly as it came back across the circuit and unfortunately failed to finish the race.
In the second race, held on Sunday morning in wet conditions, Alajajian charged and made up significant ground in the opening few laps, finishing just outside the points in 16th position.
Terrible conditions in the third and final race left Alajajian's car hard to drive and nearly blind, Chris safely brining the car home in 18th position to cap off a trying weekend.
"That was one of the most trying weekends I've ever had, I just want to forget it and move on," Alajajian said.
"In race one the car just pitched to the right, it was very strange. The car was sliding towards all the traffic coming towards me and it looked like there was going to be a massive pile up. I saw a gap between Owen Kelly and Grant Denyer and that was the only opportunity to not cause a massive crash.
"It was unfortunate that I made contact with Kelly.
"I just wanted to bring the car home in the final two races. In race three the conditions were terrible. I could barely see thanks to the windows fogging up and we were struggling with the car. We finished the race in the top twenty, which is a positive, but I have to say I'm pretty glad it's over!" he said.
The next round of the Fujitsu V8 Supercar Championship will be held at Mount Panorama Bathurst, between October 4 -- 7.