Kovalainen Makes the Difference in the World Series by Nissan Lausitz, 5 August 2004 -- The Finnish driver and current Series leader Heikki Kovalainen put in an impressive drive during the Collective Test in the EuroSpeedway-Lausitz Circuit ...
Kovalainen Makes the Difference in the World Series by Nissan
Lausitz, 5 August 2004 -- The Finnish driver and current Series leader Heikki Kovalainen put in an impressive drive during the Collective Test in the EuroSpeedway-Lausitz Circuit (Germany), lapping 1.32.620, almost six tenths of a second faster than JC Ravier (Epsilon Euskadi), and 0.857 seconds away from the former F1 driver Enrique Bernoldi. The RenaultF1 test driver explains himself: "Ravier and Bernoldi were in new tyres, but my team decided to keep the fresh tyres for tomorrow. Surely my last test in F1 had helped me a lot in keeping me active". At the end of the session, Enrique Bernoldi was told that his friend Ricardo Zonta, winner of the 2002 World Series by Nissan, will replace Da Matta in the Toyota F1 Team in the Hungarian GP: "Really? These are fantastic news! I want to send him my most sincere congratulations!" The Finnish and his whole Team are really making the difference in this Series, and even the very young Adrian Valles was 4th quickest. Adrian was followed by Porteiro, whose team decided to keep the new tyres for a better occasion. The Frenchman Didier Andre (KTR) confirmed the good balance of the Dallara Nissan car setting the 7th fastest lap of the day. Julien Vidot made a sweet and sour debut finishing in the top twelve, but an engine failure kept him away from any testing in the last 60 minutes of the second session "It's been two years since my last test in the V6 car in 2002, and I have found the different. I'm a little bit tired and my neck hurts! I have been driving a Formula Renault during the year in order to be fit, but finally I've got my place in the World Series and I want to thank the Team Epsilon for giving me such an opportunity" 5 drivers are making their debut in the Series. It looks like the summer pause after Valencia had helped very much to put some order within the V6 Teams. Ricci (Vergani Formula) was the second best rookie of the race weekend after Vidot. Gommendy (Saulnier Racing) had an engine failure in the morning session but the team worked well ad he could have a proper session in the afternoon. Serge Saulnier, the team owner, wanted to be positive:" Tristan had completed just 30 laps. Both of my drivers were in new tyres during the afternoon but obviously we are quite behind the schedule. Hernandez is progressing smoothly; he still had to learn how to profit the new tyres." Carlin Motorsport had to replace the engine of Tiago Monteiro in the afternoon. Monteiro missed the session "but the real staff haven't started yet...^Ô advises the Portuguese. World Series Light: Strong Pellegrino on top The Italian driver Matteo Pellegrino (1.36.658/168.9 km/h) has set the quickest lap time amongst World Series Light (250 Hp) drivers after completing two sessions of collective test. The Spaniard Miguez came second, at 0.188 tenths of a second, followed by the Series leader, Milos Pavlovic. Pavlovic was the fastest driver in the morning session lapping 1.37.383 (167.6 km/h). Celso Miguez was just 0.472 seconds slower, and Simon Abadie, another strong contender of the Series, was third fastest. The drivers will take part in the 5th meeting of the Series, that will end in Valencia (October 17).Pavlovic leads by 68 points, Abadie is second with 58 and Pellegrino is currently third, with 42 points. Pavlovic and Pellegrino score for the same team, Vergani Formula, a strong squad for the 2004 Team's Title. As for the Driver's, any of the top 5 guys, including Mathieu Lahaye (Saulnier) can be considered a candidate. <pre> Official Combined Practice Time 1 Heikki Kovalainen (FIN) Pons Racing 1.32.620 2 Jean Christophe Ravier (FRA) Epsilon Euskadi 0.570 3 Enrique Bernoldi (BRA) GD Racing 0.857 4 Adrian Vallés (ESP) Pons Racing 0.892 5 Felix Porteiro (ESP) Porfesa Competición 1.196 6 Tristan Gommendy (FRA) Saulnier Racing 1.235 7 Didier Andre (FRA) KTR 1.474 8 Tiago Monteiro (POR) Carlin Motorsport 1.562 9 Narain Kartikheyan (IND) RC Motorsport 1.822 10 Juan Cruz Alvarez (ARG) Gabord Reyco 2.109 11 Olivier Pla (FRA) Carlin Motorsport 2.383 12 Julien Vidot (FRA) Epsilon Euskadi 2.387 13 Giaccomo Ricci Vergani Formula 2.626 14 Pablo Donoso (CHI) GD Racing 2.855 15 Roldan Rodriguez (ESP) Porfesa Competicion 3.177 16 Tomas Kostka (CZE) RC Motorsport 3.227 17 Sergio Hernandez (ESP) Saulnier Racing 3.232 18 Giovanni Tedeschi (ITA) Vergani Formula 3.360 19 Takaya Tsubobayashi (JPN) Gabord Reyco 5.174 Best Timed Lap: 1.31.948 (H. Kovalainen, 2003)