Jerez de la Frontera, October 30, 2008
AM Session 20 Chris Van der Drift, 12th (1`25"405) 21 Alberto Valerio, 22nd (1`26"137)
PM Session 20 Bertrand Baguette, 23rd (1`28"434) 21 Alberto Valerio, 16th (1`26"358)
The collective GP2 Main Series 2-day test planned for this week at Jerez De La Frontera ended today with two more timed sessions. Trident Racing lined-up Chris Van der Drift and Alberto Valerio in the AM segment. The New Zealander, who moved to the #20 car for day2, confirmed the good job done by the team after the end of Day 1, clocking an extremely fast lap on old rubber. Unfortunately, Chris was deprived of the chance to use his set of fresh tires by a contact on turn 9 that damaged the front side of his racecar. The team successfully managed to repair the damage by the afternoon, enabling Bertrand Baguette to get behind the wheel before the end of the day. He finally made his way to the track in the last hour of the session, showing a good feeling with the car even when a thick rainfall forced everyone to move to rain tires. Alberto Valerio faced a tough job, but successfully completed his day program without incidents. Trident Racing will now be focusing on the GP2 Asia Series, set to be back on-track on the first weekend of December at Dubai Autodrome, and on the final Main Series test of the season at Paul Ricard.
Chris Van der Drift
Today we had a two-faced day. I feel sorry for having ended this morning`s work with an off-track excursion, but on the other hand I`m really happy with the car`s performance: the troubles encountered during the first day were totally gone. While entering turn 9, I braked and took the line as I usualy did, but then I lost the rear all of a sudden, and couldn`t do anything to save it. We had a new set of tires to use and, without that incident, we could have had a sure shot to a top spot.
It turned out to be a short test, but I`m definitely satisfied with the first impression. The approach to the new car was natural and, considering the short amount of time spent on-track, I`m even happy with my best laptime. I also had the chance to take some laps in wet conditions, finding a good overall feeling with ease. It`s a pity that it didn`t last long, but I was favourably impressed by the team and, given another chance, I`ll be happy to join them on-track again.
We had a busy and tough work day. Unlike many other drivers at Jerez, I did not test yesterday, so I was forced to spend some time in increasing my confidence with the car and the racetrack. I feel I did a good job with my engineer, improving the car`s handling on the fast section of the racetrack. We were not lucky though, since rain disrupted our plans to use fresh tires in the afternoon. It would`ve been interesting to measure my true potential and the cars` one with a top spot in the overall standings.
Riccardo Corbari, Managing Director
"It`s been a long day, but we eventually managed to complete all the work we scheduled. The team put together a great effort in fixing the #20 car, damaged by a contact occurred to Van der Drift in the morning session. As a result, Bertrand Baguette successfully made it to the racetrack as we expected. Chris showed his good speed skills, though he was unable to verify the car`s potential with new tires. Valerio ended his day with no mistakes and, despite the short time available, Baguette shown a convincing approach to a tough and unknown racecar. His day ended for a problem happened right after checkered flag waved, not due to a mistake"