Circuit De Catalunya
Jolyon looks ahead to Monaco after frustrating Barcelona weekend
Palmer puts disappointing GP2 weekend behind him
West Sussex racer Jolyon Palmer is keen to put last weekend’s frustrating GP2 races in Barcelona behind him to focus on his preparations for the forthcoming rounds at the world-famous Monaco circuit.
The 20-year-old rookie from Southwater battled hard throughout both races at the Circuit de Catalunya track – renowned for being notoriously difficult for overtaking – but could only secure two top 20 finishes and he was unable to repeat his impressive top 10 performance from earlier this month at Turkey.
High tyre degradation and safety car periods affected both races at the 4.655km track, with Jolyon’s gamble of a two-stop strategy in race one not paying dividend, leaving him to settle for 18th.
Jolyon, who finished as runner-up in the FIA Formula Two Championship last year, battled hard once more in Sunday’s second race, moving up the field in the latter half to cross the line 17th.
The Arden International driver will now concentrate on the next two rounds of the F1 feeder series which take place on May 26-28 at Monaco.
Jolyon, son of former Formula One racer Jonathan, will also be hoping to emulate the success his father achieved at the iconic street circuit, where he produced one of his best ever results with fifth in the 1987 F1 Grand Prix.
Speaking after his weekend Jolyon said: “We decided to take a bit of a risk in race one and opt for a two stop strategy. After a bad start I stopped early on and had good pace to jump up the order considerably. However, we were caught out by both safety cars because it meant tyre degradation wasn't as bad as we thought it would be.
“In race two we tried to go conservative on the tyres so the pace was quite bad at the start but the tyres were still degrading quickly so by the end we had no pace at all. All in all, a difficult weekend for us.”
Commenting on next weekend’s GP2 races in Monaco Jolyon added: “We have a lot of ground to make up during the short break before Monaco, but we have time to analyse the data and I’m confident we’ll be able to improve the car next weekend.”
Jolyon is next in action on 26-28 May for rounds five and six of the 2011 GP2 series which take place in Monaco.