GP2

Carroll returns to top with Silverstone win

Adam Carroll had made a surprise move of returning to the GP2 Series in mid-season, and now it is all making sense, as the young Briton took his fourth GP2 victory in the sprint race at his home track of Silverstone. "It's absolutely fantastic...

Adam Carroll had made a surprise move of returning to the GP2 Series in mid-season, and now it is all making sense, as the young Briton took his fourth GP2 victory in the sprint race at his home track of Silverstone.

"It's absolutely fantastic to win in front of the British crowd and to be on top of the podium," Carroll beamed after his victory. "Lewis Hamilton was in this same spot this time last year, and this year he's on pole for the F1, so it's something to be proud of."

It was a dramatic difference from his visit to Silverstone just four weeks ago, when a potential podium finish in the DTM event was spoiled by a penalty for a pit speed limit violation -- a penalty the native of Northern Ireland received again yesterday in the GP2 feature race.

So in only his second weekend with the FMS International team, Carroll took his fourth career GP2 victory, adding to his 2005 wins at Imola, Monaco and Spa-Francorchamps. The victory was also the fourth for the team, Giorgio Pantano having given the team three victories in 2006.

"This win means so much to me," Carroll said. "Some people have shown a great belief in me and it means a lot to get back winning. Last season and this season, up until now, has been very difficult but this makes everything worthwhile. It is great to be back!"

Carroll had the third starting position, thanks to his penalty-marred sixth place in the feature race, and he put it to good use, vaulting past polesitter Roldan Rodriguez into the first corner, following behind second-place starter Pastor Maldonado and Lucas di Grassi. Carroll quickly dispatched di Grassi with a bold move at Becketts, and then, with Rodriguez behind them, the trio set the early-race pace at the storied Formula One track.

Meanwhile, championship points leader Timo Glock, who had had to start from the back thanks to his electrics-induced DNF in yesterday's race, was on the move, rapidly moving up to 12th place. However, in his eagerness to pass Karun Chandhok, he left the door open -- or at least ajar -- for Adrian Zaugg, and the South African attacked Glock with vim. So much vim, in fact, that he overshot the braking point, and punted Glock into a gravel trap, completing a miserable Silverstone weekend for the German.

At the front, Rodriguez had spun, releasing the peloton behind him to pursue the leader, with Kazuki Nakajima and Luca Filippi at the front of the pack.

Soon after, with Maldonado slowing at the Abbey chicane, Carroll took the opportunity and grasped the lead firmly. Quickly building a two-second buffer, the local boy -- Carroll lives in Northampton, just minutes from Silverstone -- was able to drive to a solid 4.868-second victory.

Nakajima, meanwhile, dispatched di Grassi with ease, but was unable to get past Maldonado, finishing in third, 0.372 seconds adrift of the Venezuelan. di Grassi, Mike Conway and Andreas Zuber completed the top six.

With Glock held pointless for the second race, the race for the championship has tightened up considerably. Glock still leads at 39 points, bu di Grassi is only two adrift, and Filippi another two, at 35. Six race weekends still remain on this year's calendar, with the next race at Nurburgring in two weeks' time.

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Series GP2
Drivers Giorgio Pantano , Adam Carroll , Karun Chandhok , Mike Conway , Timo Glock , Lucas di Grassi , Pastor Maldonado , Adrian Zaugg , Andreas Zuber , Kazuki Nakajima , Luca Filippi