GP2

Monaco: Javier Villa qualifying report

A red flag in the middle of his fastest lap prevented Javier Villa from improving on his first qualifying attempt that had placed him sixth at the beginning of the session This handicap saw the Spaniard finishing in 18th position, a result that ...

A red flag in the middle of his fastest lap prevented Javier Villa from improving on his first qualifying attempt that had placed him sixth at the beginning of the session This handicap saw the Spaniard finishing in 18th position, a result that didn't show his good pace through the streets of Monaco.

As usual in all the races held on the narrow Monegasque track, the intense traffic and several yellow and red flags due to the typical close encounters with the barriers meant that both sessions held on Thursday, free practice and qualifying, ended up being a lottery. Among the 26 players in that game Javi wasn't one of the luckiest, in free practice, looking more to fine tune the car setup than set a fast lap time, Villa found it almost impossible to find a single clean lap although he at least managed to find a good balance in the car. This allowed him to feel really comfortable at its wheel, something really important in a track were making mistakes is as easy as Monaco.

In qualifying everything started well for the young Racing Engineering driver, who in his first attempt at a fast lap set the sixth fastest time. However, as is usual, especially on a circuit like Monaco, the track got faster and faster as the session went on so laptimes were improving in quite a spectacular way. Just as Javi was about to launch his second and ultimate attack on the top positions his fastest lap was ruined by a red flag triggered by an incident to another car. This meant having to qualify with his previous time, which left him in 18th position far below his true possibilities.

Despite having to start tomorrow from the ninth row of the grid, Javier is optimistic as he felt comfortable driving his Dallara so he expects to move up in the Feature Race and try to get to the points scoring positions. To achieve that it will crucial to avoid the usual Monaco first lap pile ups as well as guessing the right moment to do the mandatory pit stop in order to get as many laps as possible without any slower cars in front, In this way Javi hopes he can push at his own pace and recover by strategy the positions that are so difficult to get otherwise on a track were overtaking is virtually impossible.

Javier Villa's own words:

"After all it wasn't that bad today but we had bad luck as it was really difficult to find a clean lap, both in practice and qualifying. I did find myself very comfortable with the car but my only clean lap was at the beginning of the session, I was sixth then but afterwards laptimes improved and then I couldn't do any other clean laps. Tomorrow we will have to try to lap alone at our pace for as many laps as possible, we've got good pace so if we get that right I think I'd fight for points as I feel far better with the car than in the previous races."

-credit: javiervilla.com

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