GP2

Hockenheim: Race one report

Nico sets new GP2 series record Nico Rosberg today became the first driver to take a GP2 series points hat-trick of pole position, fastest lap and Race 1 win. Nico is also the first driver to win a race at three rounds in succession. Second...

Nico sets new GP2 series record

Nico Rosberg today became the first driver to take a GP2 series points hat-trick of pole position, fastest lap and Race 1 win. Nico is also the first driver to win a race at three rounds in succession. Second place for his team-mate Alex Prémat saw the ART Grand Prix team become the first to score a 1-2 in the GP2 series and they will take the lead in the teams' championship as a result. Nelson Piquet Jr put his Silverstone disappointments behind him to finish third.

> Race report. Nico commanded the race from the start, putting in a brace of qualifying-style early laps before settling into a quick and consistent rhythm which saw him stretch out a comfortable lead. So quick was his third lap, in fact, that it could not be bettered in any of the remaining 37 tours, despite a last lap effort from eventual fourth-placed driver Scott Speed. The American was having a strong race despite being passed by Prémat thanks to some nifty pit work from the Frenchman's team. Scott, who himself had Nelson Piquet Jr on his tail, was harrying Alex for second place until a mistake at Turn 1 handed the final podium place to Nelson.

Behind Scott, Heikki Kovalainen led home Giorgio Pantano following an exciting battle between the pair, as Ernesto Viso finished in seventh place. Borja García finally broke his GP2 series points duck with eighth. Viso's BCN Competicion entry was later judged to have been underweight by the stewards, and the Venezuelan driver was stricken from the results. This moves Borja up to seventh and promotes DPR's Olivier Pla into eighth. The Frenchman will therefore start tomorrow's race from pole, just as he did when he won last time out in Silverstone.

What about the championship? Heikki's leads the championship on 68 to Nico's 58, with Scott now 12 points behind Nico on 46. Adam Carroll remains on 34 in fourth place, with Gimmi Bruni in fifth on 33 and Alex Prémat sixth on 32. His 8 points, when added to the 14 scored by Nico, mean a maximum possible haul for the ART Grand Prix team. They now lead the teams' championship on 90 points, ahead of Arden International on 80. iSport International are in third on 48, with Super Nova International on 47, Coloni Motorsport on 36 and Racing Engineering on 27.

1st Nico Rosberg ART Grand Prix.59:30.442
"This is great. Everything is coming together really well. We've improved the car race by race, and it's at a stage now where I must say it's working very well. That just makes it incredibly good for me to drive and it improves my driving because I can really get an extra bit out of myself. It's just fun you can feel it under you, and you just go for it and go up to the next level."

2nd Alexandre Prémat ART Grand Prix. +14.642
"I think this is a fantastic result for me and for the team. Nico and I did a really good job so far this weekend, for this race, for qualifying, for everything, so it's just great. Speed and Piquet were pretty close behind me, so for sure it was really difficult I was braking hard and trying just to stay ahead of them. But I did, and it is fantastic to get the points and go up in the championship."

3rd Nelson Piquet Jr Hitech Piquet Sports. +15.378
"I'm very happy - I think we deserved being at least on the podium. Everything worked out the way it should, and everybody knows that since the beginning of the year a lot of things have gone wrong for me. Unfortunately I'm not in the top four or five in the championship as I should be."

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About this article
Series GP2
Drivers Giorgio Pantano , Nelson Piquet , Scott Speed , Nico Rosberg , Heikki Kovalainen , Adam Carroll , Olivier Pla , Alexandre Prémat , Borja Garcia , Ernesto Viso
Teams ART Grand Prix , Racing Engineering , Arden International