Brands Hatch Debuts for Canadians Brands Hatch, United Kingdom -- A1 Team Canada racers James Hinchcliffe and Daniel Morad made their respective debuts on the Brands Hatch Grand Prix Circuit in the United Kingdom Friday as the tenth and final...
Brands Hatch Debuts for Canadians
Brands Hatch, United Kingdom -- A1 Team Canada racers James Hinchcliffe and Daniel Morad made their respective debuts on the Brands Hatch Grand Prix Circuit in the United Kingdom Friday as the tenth and final round of the 2007-08 A1GP World Cup of Motorsport got underway at the renowned Kent track.
Morad wracked up 21 laps on the 2.62-mile circuit in the morning's 'Rookie-Only' session, his best a 1m16.102s -- good for ninth on the timesheets, before the 18-year-old handed over to fellow Toronto-native James Hinchcliffe for the rest of the event. Hinchcliffe logged 23 tours in the afternoon's hour long practice session, the 21-year-old back in the A1GP saddle for the first time since the second round of the current season last October in the Czech Republic.
While he placed 17th from the 22 nations entered, with a quickest lap of 1m16.257s, the Canadian worked on building his track knowledge and re-acclimatizing himself to the 550bhp A1GP car. Great Britain's Robbie Kerr, an A1GP winner at Brands Hatch last season, delighted the home crowd with the fastest practice lap, a turn of 1m14.891s.
"My first day back was a bit of a baptism of fire," Hinchcliffe said. "It's a challenging circuit and obviously I haven't been in this car since October so there was a bit of reacquainting going on. That said, things slowly came to us over the session and at the end of the day our position on the time chart doesn't look great but it's not a true reflection on our pace. I actually don't think we're that far off the front-running pace. There's definitely more to come from both me and the car and I'm looking forward to a good day tomorrow!'
"There was quite a bit of traffic out there this morning," reflected Morad after his final rookie outing of the season. "I got caught up in a bit of it in the first session and just as I managed to find a decent gap the checkered flag came out. We continued to make adjustments to the car throughout the session. The car was great on some parts of the track and not so great on others so there's room for improvement. I really liked the track, it's not too dissimilar from Mosport back home with lots of fast corners, my kind of circuit!"
Team Manager Simon Cayzer commented; "This morning was pretty straightforward with Daniel doing a solid job providing us with the required feedback. We knew the first session back with James would be a case of dialing back-in. We know the areas that need to be addressed and we'll work on that tonight with him. Really, as James alluded to, we're in a stronger position than the times perhaps reflect and with a bit more track time we'll be up there!"