Arden takes fourth in final GP2 table
Arden International easily secured fourth place in the GP2 teams' championship at Monza after Nicolas Lapierre finished sixth on Saturday and fourth on Sunday.
On Saturday the Frenchman started 19th, but by avoiding trouble and putting in a good, consistent drive moved steadily up the order by the flag after making an early pit stop. He started the Sunday race from third and lost out in a first lap shuffle. Although unable to match the pace of the frontrunners he fought back to earn fourth place after keeping out of trouble. Despite missing two races after his Monaco accident he finishes the season in ninth place.
It was a frustrating weekend for Michael Ammermueller. After qualifying ninth another driver's penalty moved him up to eighth, and he made good progress in the race moving up to 4th. Alas heHowever a damaged his front wing and hadforced him to make a second pit stop, which dropped him back to an eventual 12th. On Sunday he was the innocent victim of someone else's accident when Monfardini appeared to make little attempt to brake at the first chicane on the second lap, and he retired with damaged suspension. He finishes two places behind Nicolas in the table in 11th place, having won the sprint race at Valencia back in March.
Nicolas Lapierre - Saturday: 'Sixth position is not too bad. We're still missing some time in the car, we're a bit too slow, but I had a very good race. I just kept out of trouble when people were attacking everywhere. It was quite a smart race. The pit stop was not so good, and we stopped very early, but then I scored some points, which is good for me and the team.' Sunday: 'It was a good start but it was a bit of a sandwich between the two guys at the front, and then we lost some positions. The people in front were just too fast. I made no mistakes but we were just not fast enough, but and it was good to score some points. I was sixth but I got past Piquet and Premat when they made mistakes. Sixth yesterday, fourth today, it's not too bad. It wasn't such a good season because of the crash in Monaco, but we did get a little bit better towards the end. We were third in the championship before the crash, and we were second at one stage, one point from the lead. We had a very strong beginning of the season, and then after the crash it was kind of finished, because I missed the test in Ricard and when I did get back I was not 100% fit. There are no plans for next year, but I want to stay in GP2.'
Michael Ammermueller - Saturday: 'I had a big fight with Premat, and I touched him a little bit on the rear on the straight, and the front wing was gone. In the beginning it was OK, but with the second pit stop I lost a lot of time. In the end I think we could have gone top five for sure. 'Sunday: 'I had a good start and was seventh on the first lap, and there was a big gap behind me. Then at the first chicane Monfardini came straight through the chicane and hit me - same as he did to someone else yesterday. The suspension was broken and we couldn't continue. It's been a long season. The beginning was very good, the first races we had a really good pace, but then we had some bad luck. It was quite difficult to keep up with the quick drivers at the end of the season. I learned quite a lot this year because it's completely different to what I've done before, and it will help me a lot for next season.'