TURKISH TORTURE FOR DPR
It all started well, with a 5th place in practice for Clivio Piccione, but the British team's weekend gradually deteriorated with little to show for their efforts.
Qualifying for the Monegasque driver was hampered by a massive spin in Turn 8 on his second set of new tyres. He had been in 5th with his first set of tyres but was obviously trying to improve on that. After his quickest first sector of the weekend, the end result was very disappointing as it placed him in 13th place and was not representative of Clivio's true capabilities at the Istanbul Park track.
Vitaly Petrov had a disastrous qualifying session. A gearbox electronic problem prevented him from leaving the pit lane and it took the Mecachrome technicians almost the entire session to resolve the issue. The gearbox was taken off and a new wiring loom fitted, but in the end it took a new ECU unit before the car would successfully get away. With only 40 seconds of the qualifying session remaining, the Russian was not able to put in a timed lap and the team had to obtain a special dispensation from the Stewards to start the race from the back of the grid based on his performance in untimed practice.
In yesterday's first race, Clivio did 11 laps before a brake issue caused him to bring the car into the pits. The brakes were locking on, eventually traced to a faulty master cylinder, and the end result was a spectacular brake fire in the pits and another disappointing outing for Piccione. Vitaly Petrov had a fairly unremarkable race to finish 16th , having made good progress through the field from the back of the grid.
Unfortunately matters did not improve in today's second race. A tremendous start by Piccione, who was convinced that his car was good enough to aim for a podium finish, saw him up to 11th from the back of the grid by the end of the first lap. However, an over-ambitious move by Pantano pushed him off the track and the resulting damage to Piccione's car was too bad for him to continue. Petrov spun off on the first lap but recovered to continue, finishing in a dispiriting 17th place.
Team Principal David Price said, "First thing Friday we were on the button and then we've come away with nothing. I'm very fed up and there's not much more we can say at the moment. We have looked into every area of the team and know we are doing everything right but we're just not getting the results to back that up."