GP2

Monaco: Racing Engineering Friday report

Monaco's roulette spun the wrong way for Racing Engineering in Friday morning's qualifying session that decided the grid positions for the only GP2 race due this weekend in the Monegasque Principality. While Javi Villa could run confidently and ...

Monaco's roulette spun the wrong way for Racing Engineering in Friday morning's qualifying session that decided the grid positions for the only GP2 race due this weekend in the Monegasque Principality. While Javi Villa could run confidently and concentrate on setting up his car for the race, Sergio Jimenez had his chances totally ruined by a faulty engine that resulted in major disappointment for both the driver and the team. Once again the problem has arisen as a result of a failure from the equipment supplied by Mecachrome and totally out of their control.

If qualifying in GP2 is always complex with just half an hour for all the drivers, which makes getting a "clean" lap really difficult, through the narrow Monaco streets the problem gets far worse and the usual incidents and the heavy traffic end up indiscriminately doling out good luck and bad luck. Bearing that in mind, Racing Engineering has been working since yesterday's free practice on the optimum race set up without getting obsessed with having a car good enough for just one flying lap. This means that the 14th position achieve by Javi, just 3 tenths away from the top 10 and again the first Spaniard on the grid, is quite a satisfying result. The young Spanish driver couldn't push as much as he would have liked, continually running into a lot of traffic, but at the end of the session he was happy with the work done by the team and was looking forward for tomorrow's race with a car that was running very well.

For Sergio Jimenez the day ended up in frustration after suffering an engine problem that prevented him from defending his position and he couldn't finish better than 21st. The oil leaking from his car in the qualifying parc ferme speaks volumes about the mechanical failure in the engine supplied by Mecachrome, something that will now mean extra overnight work for Racing Engineering in order to fit a new engine in time for the Brazilian driver to race tomorrow.

Alfonso D'Orleans (team principal):"For Javi it has gone quite well even if he got a lot of traffic. He was again the first Spaniard on the grid and the car should run very well in race trim so, even with the Monaco roulette meaning you never know what will happen, we hope we can have a good race tomorrow. For Sergio it has been quite disappointing as we already had similar problems with Mecachrome engines so it's starting to be quite frustrating, especially because is something beyond our control. At least Sergio was happy with the car's behaviour but if the engine doesn't work there is nothing we can do."

Javier Villa (driver car 14): "I got a lot of traffic so it was really hard to have a clean lap but we've managed to improve the car from yesterday and now it's running really well. For tomorrow's race we are still fine tuning it and we hope to have a good race."

Sergio Jimenez (driver car 15): "We had problems with the engine from low oil pressure that started free practice and that stopped us from doing more than 4 or 5 laps and we couldn't do some changes for qualifying when we almost couldn't run. Now I'll have a new engine fitted for the race and I hope things go better tomorrow."

-credit: racing engineering

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About this article
Series GP2
Drivers Sergio Jimenez , Javier Villa
Teams Racing Engineering