Point for Villa, tyre trouble thwarts Pic Javier Villa nurtured high hopes of ending his GP2 Asia Series on a winning note in today's Bahrain sprint race, but the Arden driver's victory chances were compromised within moments of the start. The...
Point for Villa, tyre trouble thwarts Pic
Javier Villa nurtured high hopes of ending his GP2 Asia Series on a winning note in today's Bahrain sprint race, but the Arden driver's victory chances were compromised within moments of the start. The Spaniard was slow away from the front row of the grid and the following drivers swamped him immediately. That dropped him to the lower reaches of the top eight, where he spent several laps waging a fierce duel against several rivals -- including team-mate Charles Pic.
The Frenchman worked his way ahead of Villa as the Arden cars settled into sixth and seventh positions, but a damaged front left tyre obliged Charles to make an unscheduled pit stop and he slipped to 19th. Vila consequently finished sixth, a result that elevated him to fourth in the final standings -- just one point ahead of Pic. A run of strong, consistent results -- including a victory last time out in Bahrain -- was enough, however, to ensure that Pic ended the campaign as the championship's leading rookie.
"My start was very unfortunate. The car's anti-stall kicked in twice, so I lost quite a few places. I earned a point for finishing sixth, but really this is a race I could have won. Looking at the positives, I finished fourth in the series and Arden was classified second in the championship for teams. We have been strong throughout the campaign and it has been very good preparation for the main GP2 Series -- if we carry on working like this I believe we can challenge for the championship title."
"I made a good start and took the best line through the first corner, but then I chose the wrong side of the track at Turn Four and lost positions to Davide Valsecchi and Luca Filippi. I was potentially faster than both of them and pushed hard to pass, but then I made contact with Valsecchi. I lost places to Javier and Alexander Rossi as a result, but then repassed Javier and Filippi. My front left tyre had been damaged, though, which made things difficult and eventually it punctured so I had to pit for a replacement.
"I have learned a lot during the series and ended up as the best rookie, which is very satisfying. The lessons learned will be useful in the future and I can approach the GP2 Main Series with confidence. Roll on Barcelona..."