iSport press release
iSport reflect on Malaysia
Friday’s practice session resulted in a great start for Jolyon Palmer, who set the quickest laptime at the Sepang International circuit, resulting in P1 for the iSport driver.
Later that afternoon, qualifying resulted in P7 for Palmer, but a disappointing P20 for team mate Marcus Ericsson.
Saturday’s feature race proved frustrating for the team after Palmer stalled on the grid, forcing him to restart from the pit lane and a gamble on tyre strategy didn’t pay off, resulting in both drivers at the back end of the grid for Sunday’s Sprint race.
Paul Jackson -Team Principal
“In the first phase of the race, both drivers were making good progress through the field, and we were hopeful of recovering a decent result, but during pit stops we changed only rear tyres on both cars, in the hope that we could jump some of the cars in front. This proved to be the wrong decision, as we suffered more degradation of the front tyres than expected, which meant that both cars were losing ground, with under steer right through the second phase. This was very disappointing after
such an encouraging couple of tests, where we felt very confident of our race pace, however the solution was very obvious so we know we can fix it.’’
Unfortunately for the iSport team, Sunday’s Sprint Race came with more disappointment, with the race ending early for Ericsson after a collision with Davide Valsecchi, resulting in Ericsson being penalised with a 10 place grid penalty for the next race at Bahrain. Palmer however, made great progress from P17, gaining 2 places in the opening laps and then securing P12 at the chequered flag.
Paul Jackson – Team Principal
“The Sprint Race was difficult because of our start positions. Both drivers made progress through the field, but Marcus was cut short due to an incident with Davide Valsecchi. Fortunately, nobody was hurt, which is the important thing. Disappointingly, the stewards attached blame to Marcus and handed him a 10-place grid penalty for the next race. Interestingly, there was no bad feeling with Davide and he was puzzled by the steward’s decision. We will now analyse this incident to try and understand such a strange judgment.”
The team remain positive, lessons have been learnt, and luckily in the early stages of the season. The iSport team will recover and come back fighting, and once again show they are true contenders for the GP2 Series Championship.
Bahrain is the next stop for the team, kicking off at the Sakhir International Circuit on 20-22 April.