World Cup winners celebrate ninth win at "furious finale" With team owner Willi Weber looking on from the pit garage A1 Team Germany recorded its ninth win of the season at the furious A1 GP World Cup of Motorsport finale. Nico Hulkenberg...
World Cup winners celebrate ninth win at "furious finale"
With team owner Willi Weber looking on from the pit garage A1 Team Germany recorded its ninth win of the season at the furious A1 GP World Cup of Motorsport finale. Nico Hulkenberg narrowly defeated close rival Great Britain in a thrilling, closely fought feature race which remained in doubt all the way to the chequered flag around the rollercoaster Brands Hatch circuit in Great Britain. The German team had already succeeded in clinching the World Cup title two weeks before at the penultimate round.
The German team started the sprint race from second place on the grid. At the start Robbie Kerr stormed from pole position in the British team car to lead the race. Nico Hulkenberg lost several metres when he ran into the rev-limiter and was unable to shift-up immediately from third gear. He followed the Briton for 15 laps and was second at the finish line in front of Italy.
In the feature race Hulkenberg overtook his British rival after the standing start. Around the 3.703 kilometre circuit south east of London, the 19-year old Rheinlander from Emmerich initially led the field behind the Safety Car and for another eight laps after the race was restarted. David Sears' race team then decided to carry out the mandatory pit stop. The chasing car of Great Britain stopped one lap later. Germany was able to retain its advantage over Great Britain owing to the team's excellent tyre change. Hulkenberg and Kerr set almost identical lap times so that the gap fluctuated constantly between a half and one second. Hulkenberg finally celebrated his ninth victory of the season by 0.619 seconds after 50 laps. It was also the team's ninth win. As a result, the statistics show that the German team recorded as many victories as the chasing teams from Great Britain, New Zealand and Malaysia together which each recorded three teams apiece.
Nicolas Hulkenberg: "That was one of the most difficult races of my career! We drove side-by-side through the first two corners after the start. I was on the outside and just thought that I should go for gold. Approaching the third corner I was then on the inside and pulled away. Robbie Kerr was glued to my gearbox right until the end and tried everything to pass. I'm delighted that we did end the season in such fine style. It was the hardest race of my life. The race just didn't seem to end when I was in the cockpit. I radioed the pits on several occasions to ask how many laps were left. The pit stop was great once again -- congratulations to the team. I made a mistake before the sprint race: Because of the circuit's bumpy nature I bandaged my hands like a boxer to reduce the affect of the shocks. However, the blood flow was restricted and I got cramp in my arms, which is why Robbie Kerr was able to build up such an advantage."
Willi Weber: "A fantastic final! I'm absolutely delighted to round off the season with a win, which we owe to Nico and David Sear's team. I explained to Nico before the sprint race that he should retain his second position at the start and throughout the race. You should never take too many risks in the first race. He did exactly as that. He also followed my game plan in the feature race, attacked and won. Nonetheless, it was nail biting until the very end, since his closest rival Robbie Kerr also drove a fabulous race and waited for Nico to make a mistake. However, Nico doesn't make mistakes, even under enormous pressure. This well excellent ninth win for the team proved that Nico and the team were more than a worthy winner of the championship."
-credit: team germany