Trident Racing suffers tough Race 1 at Al Sakhir
After the round held jointly with the Formula 1 Bahrain Grand Prix, the GP2 Series was back in Bahrain for the third round of the 2012 season, which started today. The schedule differs from all the other rounds, as practice, qualifying and race 1 were held together on Friday.
The feature race for Trident Racing ended up with the 16th and the 18th position respectively scored by Julian Leal and Stéphane Richelmi. Both of them were off to a tough start due to the bad luck suffered in qualifying. High traffic penalized Richelmi, who finished in 24th, as well as his team-mate, who was prevented to do better than 21st.
The drivers' starting positions prevented them from fighting for a points position, but the team collected an awesome feedback in terms of tire wear. The weekend schedule will be now featuring the running of Race 2, set for tomorrow at 14:00 local time (13:00 CET) on a 23-lap distance.
Julian Leal “I see today as a positive day for us. First of all, the work done regarding the starting procedure paid off, and after all the issues I suffered in the previous races, I finally managed to gain some positions. In the race we had a really good pace in the early stages. Then a progressively worse understeer took over and the front tires started to wear out. We have a lot of data to analyze, we know how we can improve and I think that this weekend will turn out to be a valuable one for the rest of the season."
Stéphane Richelmi “The circuit has changed a lot compared to last weekend. We decided to turn as little laps as possible in practice, and in qualifying i did a run with hard tires before moving to softs. Unfortunately, that has remained my best mark. When I exited the pits I saw that our set-up wasn't well-suited for oft tires and I also had to pass several slower cars. As a consequence, I had to take-off from the 12th row and my start wasn't good. I recovered well and tried to manage our tires. I went into trouble after many others but at that time I was too far away from the top-10. I hope to get back on the right track in race 2 as happened in Malaysia".