Monza blows hot and cold for Ocean Racing Technology The first race of the GP2 Main Series on the Monza circuit today saw a very unusual event with the sudden arrival of rain on the formation lap which forced the race to begin under safety car...
Monza blows hot and cold for Ocean Racing Technology
The first race of the GP2 Main Series on the Monza circuit today saw a very unusual event with the sudden arrival of rain on the formation lap which forced the race to begin under safety car conditions.
Starting 17th on the grid, Alvaro Parente faced the adversities head on, driving an exceptional race on a damp track and working his way up to third place. Unfortunately, two penalties saw him drop back to seventh then 11th place by the time he eventually crossed the line. The first penalty was handed out for short cutting the circuit on three occasions during the first lap, the second for speeding in pitlane during his compulsory stop.
Alvaro had succeeded in drawing perfection from his single-seater and winning all his on track battles, but the end result left him with a bitter taste in his mouth because instead of securing well deserved points and starting on the 1st row of the grid for race two, he is forced to start from row 6 with no points to his name from the opening race. "It was a tough race because of the atmospheric conditions, but a great one in terms of performance," the Portuguese driver analyses. "I was 3rd and I was closing the gap with the leaders when I was handed a drive through penalty for cutting the chicane three times because of aquaplaning against which I had no control. I lost a lot of positions and the podium was not on the cards anymore, but 7th position was a promising quantum of solace for the second race. However, the 25 second penalty I was handed after the race made me fall back to 11th position. The last penalty was two really because without the last safety car neutralisation I would have lost only one position. There is still the satisfaction of having an excellent race but on the other hand the result is frustrating."
19th at the start, teammate Karun Chandhok saw his race compromised by leaves, which due to the pouring rain, had fallen from the trees overhanging the track. They made their way into his radiator air intake and made the Indian's engine temperature climb dangerously high, forcing him to pit so that the team could clean them out. As the pit stop was carried out behind the safety car, Karun was forced to set out again in last place... "After that I had a drive through penalty and I had to push really hard to make up for lost ground. But the track was damp and it made things harder. In the last stage of the race I had an off track excursion and I had to retire. It was not a good day for me and the second race will be hard too."
The second race will be broadcasted on the Eurosport chain on Sunday at 9:30 am.