VITALY PETROV, FOURTH. DAVIDE VALSECCHI, EIGHTH. BARWA ADDAX TEAM RUNNERS UP IN TEAM CHAMPIONSHIP. Vitaly Petrov finished fourth and Davide Valsecchi eighth in today's first race, which took place this afternoon at the Portuguese circuit of...
VITALY PETROV, FOURTH. DAVIDE VALSECCHI, EIGHTH.
BARWA ADDAX TEAM RUNNERS UP IN TEAM CHAMPIONSHIP.
Vitaly Petrov finished fourth and Davide Valsecchi eighth in today's first race, which took place this afternoon at the Portuguese circuit of Portimao. The final rankings are now wrapped up as far as the Barwa Addax Team are concerned with Petrov finishing a magnificent runner up in the driver's championship, Romain Grosjean fourth and Davide Valsecchi, with one race to go, lies seventeenth overall. The team has ended the season runners up in the team championship.
Vitaly Petrov competed in a race without too many incidents, despite the Safety Car having to come out on track twice during the course of events. He made a great start, holding off several attacks from the championship leader to lead into the first turn. He also defended his position very well against his distinguished German rival after the first safety car. The main problems came when he made his pit stop. The team expected there to be serious degraining in his tyres, so they prepared a strategy and set up that was over conservative. This meant that he lost one position during his compulsory pit stop and although he attacked the two drivers in front of him in the last few laps, due to the fact that his tyres were in better condition, it was never really enough to overtake on this circuit.
Davide Valsecchi has driven his best race since he joined the Barwa Addax Team, and for the first time was in the points. Tomorrow he will start from pole position on the starting grid, having finished today's first race in eighth position. It's a shame he lost six positions on the first lap, after having been unlucky enough to collide with another driver at the first turn. The line he had chosen was completely blocked, while a series of drivers escaped the confusion and managed to get through on the right hand line of the track. After this incident his front spoiler was slightly damaged which hampered his rhythm, especially on the faster sections of the circuit. Despite his misfortune he had several battles with drivers who have a lot more experience than him at this level. Nevertheless, he managed to climb to eighth from his eleventh position at the end of the first lap.
After tomorrow's second race it will be time to look back and sum up this season. Vitaly Petrov, after what has been a great season, has finished runner up in the driver's championship. In spite of being dogged by bad luck, particularly with engine problems, he has managed to finish ahead of drivers who already belong to Formula 1 teams.
Barwa Addax Team has consolidated itself among the top teams within the GP2 class, having finished runners up in the race for the team title. They fought hard with the champions and finished a long way ahead of the third placed team. Tomorrow the last race of the season will take place in Portimao, Portugal at 13.00 hrs local time.