The Portuguese Tiago Monteiro tops the times in Valencia
Cheste, 17 June 2004 -- Tiago Monteiro was in a very good mood this afternoon after completing a very successful World Series by Nissan collective test in Valencia, where the 4th meeting of the Series will take place this weekend.
Since Jarama, three leaders had presented their votes for the 2004 Title, including Monteiro. "I'm glad to be here. In Portugal everything is about football these days! Today we've tested a lot of thinks, we took some risks but the car improved quite a lot. Tomorrow will try some more changes."
The wind was quite strong during the afternoon, and the air temperature was never below the 30º C, but the drivers manager to improve their best morning laps, even if the session was stopped by three times, and the incident with Kostka ruined any chance of improvement for the lasting 5 minutes.
Ravier (Epsilon Euskadi) was second fastest and finished the morning session in top position: "We have been very concentrated in the aerodynamics and I think the car is quite competitive now."
Ander Vilariño was very impressive in the morning with new tires, but in the afternoon he exited in one of the corners and his car had to go for repair. Still, he must be considered as a serial winner for the weekend, and he still holds the fastest lap in Valencia, 1.22.947 (173.8 km/h).
Didier Andre putted an impressive third in the morning session. It was like a real boost for the KTR team, which has lost Jouanny due to a lack of sponsorship.
Kartikheyan was third quickest at the end of the day but he reported to have a problem with the car in the second sector: "I must do something wrong in that sector, but tomorrow everything will be okay."
The World Series leader, Heikki Kovalainen, was in a discreet 4th position, in front of Bernoldi. The Brazilian F1 refugee was followed by Adrian Valles, one of the two local drivers in Valencia.
Bernoldi could not improve his time due to a late red flag, but he keeps confident for the racing weekend: "Since my last test in Valencia, some weeks ago, we had improved the car quite a lot, and we still have a full day of work tomorrow".
As reported, Vilariño's car caused the first red flag. The second one was due to an incident with Pla, when the Frenchman was on top the times sheet. Tomas Kostka was causing the third and the last of the red flags...
Felix Porteiro was unable to take part in the second session due to an engine failure.
Simon Abadie for the World Series Light
Simon Abadie was the strongest driver amongst the 2 liter category. The Former F3 driver set a time of 1.27.309. The second session was the quickest one and profited of smooth temperatures and a better grip, allowing very little time difference between Pellegrino, the second fastest, and the Spaniard Celso Miguez.
Giovanni Tedeschi finished in a remarkable 4th place. The Italian is also testing the World Series by Nissan car with Vergani and we all could see the improvement in this 16 year old driver.
<pre> Best Timed Laps (All Sessions) 1. Tiago Monteiro Carlin Motorsport 1.24.686 2. Jean Christophe Ravier Epsilon Euskadi 1.24.752 3. Narain Kartikheyan RC Motorsport 1.25.080 4. Heikki Kovalainen Pons Racing 1.25.093 5. Enrique Bernoldi GD Racing 1.25.269 6. Adrian Valles Pons Racing 1.25.285 7. Olivier Pla Carlin Motorsport 1.25.591 8. Juan Cruz Alvarez Gabord Reyco 1.25.716 9. Tristan Gommendy Saulnier Racing 1.25.782 10. Ander Vilariño Epsilon Euskadi 1.25.878 11. Didier Andre KTR 1.25.921 12. Roldan Rodriguez Porefesa Competicion 1.26.390 13. Tomas Kostka RC Motorsport 1.26.677 14. Pablo Donoso GD Racing 1.27.465