The ART Grand Prix team is on the way up, the result of the two rounds contested this weekend at the Nurburgring did not see the teams two drivers Nico Rosberg and Alexandre Premat rewarded at the same level as their splendid competitiveness, but...
The ART Grand Prix team is on the way up, the result of the two rounds contested this weekend at the Nurburgring did not see the teams two drivers Nico Rosberg and Alexandre Premat rewarded at the same level as their splendid competitiveness, but their performances proved that the team is definitely headed in the right direction, the path of success!
After securing 2nd and 8th places on the grid in qualifying, Nico and Alexandre respectively lost 9 and 14 places when their fastest laps were cancelled due to the fact that they were recorded under yellow flags.
In spite of this handicap, which was heightened for Nico after a hesitant clutch on his Dallara Renault that forced him to start the race last, way behind the others, both men performed strongly and worked their way up through the field, with the German racer eventually securing his second podium of the season, while his French teammate snatched fourth on the final turn when he brilliantly overtook Nelson Piquet Jr.
Both men qualified on the 3rd row of the grid for the second race, and found different fortunes awaiting them on Sunday morning. Nico had the potential to fight for victory, however it escaped him in the final laps when Nelson Piquet hit him and forced him to slow down a bit, which allowed Adam Carroll to get through. As for Alexandre, after a slow getaway, he lost out after an incident triggered by Lopez.
Sitting on 21 points, Nico is now in 5th place in the drivers championship and thanks to the 12 points from Alexandre, the ART GP team is in the top three of the team's classification with 33 points, 9 points behind the leader, Arden.
Frederic Vasseur (CEO): The Nurburgring was, once again this year, a good weekend for ART GP. We continue to progress in both qualifying and the race. The potential of the team continues from race to race and Nico and Alexandre played their part without any false promise in these two races. We came close to victory, but we'll get it another time, better luck next time! However, we cement the championships with our excellent performances on track. Nico brought back some big points from the Nurburgring, Alex also, it was a remarkable overall performance from the team and the drivers, and that can only give confidence for the rounds to come.
Alexandre Premat: How to sum up the weekend? Satisfying, very encouraging, but also a little frustrating... We progressed well in qualifying but both Nico and I were sanctioned after securing our best time under yellow flags. A small and quickly forgotten misadventure. The first race went very well especially in view of a catastrophic grid position and I succeeded in making my way up to 4th position, with some strong overtaking manoeuvres that were not dangerous, which was not the case with everyone this weekend! I was fully satisfied with the first race for two reasons: the result and the points that came with it to reward the efforts for the team, and also because for the first time since the beginning of the season I felt really good in the car.
With Steve and Bruno, my engineer, we worked in a good direction and it was an immense satisfaction because I know now how to exploit the full potential of the car. We have had many upsets since the beginning of the year, but the team is powerful and one can only be optimistic. I am particularly happy and excited after this very promising weekend, I think that we can finish the season on a high With regard to the second race; it is the biggest negative point of the weekend. I had a bad start because I did not find engage the clutch fully, but a good result was still possible, until Lopez made a silly mistake stemming from immaturity, and made four cars DNF. He should be penalized as well as Garcia, who did not have the right to take part in the second race after causing a pile-up in the first round!
Nico Rosberg: We made some big points here and I don't have any doubts about the fact that one day soon we will be on the highest step of the podium! At the beginning of the first race, I released the clutch a little too quickly and I stalled, which saw me start the race in last position. I did not have another choice to tackle beginning with the end, but the team told me to slow down because I was 3rd. I did not understand at the time, because I didn't think it was possible to have gone up that far so quickly! The team also called me in for a very good pit stop, very early in race, so that I would not be obstructed by traffic. The victory was in my sights in the second race, but Neel Jani severely blocked me and Nelson ran into me. I am not upset with him at all, it's normal, it's racing!