Javier Villa will start from the seventh row of the grid in the first of the two races that the GP2 Asia Series will dispute this weekend in Dubai, venue for the second round of the championship.
In Free Practice the Spanish driver was learning the unusual Arab Emirates track, and dedicated the thirty minutes of the session to starting to discover its key points while working with his team, SuperNova, in defining the best possible setup for his Dallara. The initial setup with which Javi started to run on Dubai's track required a lot of changes, and in spite of a promising eleventh time, registered without having been really going really for it, Villa admitted that he was finding it hard to extract the maximum from his car in these conditions.
Ahead of the Qualifying session, several changes were made to the configuration of the Spaniard's GP2 car and he soon started to find his pace, managing to be as high as second, barely a tenth from the best time, during the first part of the decisive session to decide the grid for Friday's race. However in the second part of qualifying Javi only managed to have one good lap on a track that was now much faster, and whilst several of his rivals were able to improve by as much as a second on their previous times, Villa could only reduce his time by a couple of tenths, which meant he lost several positions, finishing 14th, just ahead of his teammate in SuperNova, the Briton James Jakes.
In spite of not finishing so high up the grid as he was expecting, Villa was still feeling positive about the work achieved throughout the day. His pace in Qualification was good when he was doing several consecutive laps, and the configuration of Dubai's track, with two wide straights, is good for overtaking so he's optimistic regarding tomorrow's Feature Race and his aim will be to push from the beginning in order to gain as many places as possible, looking to finish in a points scoring position and also to be well placed for Saturday's Sprint Race.
Javier Villa's own words: "In free practice I was eleventh but it was difficult for me to have a good pace. Later we changed many things on the car and in the first part of qualifying I was going much better, second and just two tenths away from the fastest. But in the second part the other drivers improved their times a lot, by up to a second, whereas I only had a single lap without traffic and improved only two tenths so I ended up 14th. For tomorrow I believe that I have a very good pace so I will try to end up in the points and in a good position for Saturday. The circuit is really big, it's quite a broad track, with two very long straights, so the first half of the race tomorrow has to be really fast to gain positions."