GP2

Monza: Round nine series preview

Three races, sixty points. That's all that remains of the 2007 GP2 Series, and as we arrive at Italian motorsport heaven the championship is finely poised. With both Lucas di Grassi and Timo Glock taking victories two weeks ago in Istanbul, the ...

Three races, sixty points. That's all that remains of the 2007 GP2 Series, and as we arrive at Italian motorsport heaven the championship is finely poised. With both Lucas di Grassi and Timo Glock taking victories two weeks ago in Istanbul, the title rivals are now split by just two points. And we thought we'd had it good for the first two years--

The Magical Mystery Tour: La Pista Magica plays host to round nine of the 2007 GP2 Series, and as always there's a certain air of expectation hanging around the Autodromo Nazionale di Monza, near Milan, Italy. This is one of the finest circuits in the world, and as we have seen over the years, anything can happen at this historic track. It is one of the drivers' favourites, and between now and Sunday the latest chapter of an already intoxicating championship fight will have been written. Exactly which driver will have authored the plotline, however, is anyone's guess.

Last season, Giorgio Pantano recorded two amazing victories on his home track, and the Italian will be hoping for a repeat performance this season as he aims not only to take the advantage in the battle for third position, but with three weekends to go, the championship is still within sight. The same goes for Adam Carroll, whose FMS International team carried Giorgio to his victories last season. Their know-how at this, their home track, could be all important, as could Luca Filippi's storming reputation at his home circuit. All three will be hoping for wins.

Then there's the battle at the top. Lucas or Timo? While Lucas has been the most consistent driver of the season, it is Timo who has often held an advantage with qualifying and race pace. Things really are too close to call, and just as we were treated to an amazing battle between Heikki and Nico in 2005, Nelson and Lewis in 2006, so it seems we have been blessed once again with a titanic battle between two worthy opponents in 2007.

We've got a state of musical chairs this weekend, as injury has once again necessitated a driver change at a few of our teams. Over at DPR, Christian Bakkerud's long-term back injury has forced him to pull out of the event. Into his place steps Olivier Pla, who ran with the squad in 2005 and 2006, taking two wins for the team in the first season. Olivier most recently was seen testing the new GP2 / 08 car last week, and we welcome him back to the series. Meanwhile BCN have Markus Niemela back in action after he was sidelined in Turkey, and Ricardo Risatti returns to Trident for a second weekend to stand in for the injured Pastor Maldonado.

What about the championship? Timo leads the way on 66 points, with Lucas two behind on 64. In the battle for third. Luca Filippi still holds the position on 37, with Giorgio Pantano and Kazuki Nakajima on 36 and Adam Carroll on 34.

In the teams' championship the standings still follow the teams' lead Indrivers at the top as iSport ternational maintain their first place Inwith 94 points, 22 ahead of ART Grand Prix. Super Nova ternational lie Inthird on 50 with Campos now a brilliant fourth on 47.

-credit: gp2series

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About this article
Series GP2
Drivers Giorgio Pantano , Adam Carroll , Olivier Pla , Timo Glock , Lucas di Grassi , Pastor Maldonado , Christian Bakkerud , Kazuki Nakajima , Luca Filippi , Ricardo Risatti , Markus Niemela
Teams ART Grand Prix , Trident