Eastern Creek: Team Great Britain preview

A1 Team Great Britain Targeting Points Down Under Wednesday 31 January, 2007 -- A1 Team Great Britain holds a simple objective heading into Round 7 of the 2006-07 A1GP World Cup of Motorsport this weekend, 2nd-4th February, at Australia's...

A1 Team Great Britain Targeting Points Down Under

Wednesday 31 January, 2007 -- A1 Team Great Britain holds a simple objective heading into Round 7 of the 2006-07 A1GP World Cup of Motorsport this weekend, 2nd-4th February, at Australia's Eastern Creek circuit and that's simply to score points. With three straight races failing to score, the British team's title hopes have suffered a set-back falling from second place, just 12 points behind leaders Germany, to fourth place 29 markers off the lead exiting the previous round in New Zealand a fortnight ago.

Frustrating Feature race retirements for Robbie Kerr in Indonesia and New Zealand have allowed the French and New Zealand teams to edge past A1 Team Great Britain in the Nations Standings while Germany's dominance in Round 6 at Taupo Motorsports Park, courtesy of teenage rookie Niko Hulkenberg, has further increased the task facing the British entry heading into this weekend's return to Sydney's Eastern Creek circuit.

The 2.4-mile, 12-turn Australian track hosts its second A1GP meeting following a stop there in the inaugural 2005-06 A1GP season. The British team hopes to recreate some of the success it enjoyed on the last visit to Eastern Creek where Robbie Kerr posted a top-five qualifying effort and backed it up with a fifth place finish in the Sprint race followed be a second place podium finish in the Feature.

Kerr, the 2002 British F3 Champion, will be joined in Australia by the team's rookie racer, Oliver Jarvis, winner of the prestigious 2005 McLaren Autosport BRDC Young Driver of the Year Award and an A1GP podium finisher last November in China. Jarvis will participate in Friday morning's Rookie-Only Session in an effort to maximize the track time available to the team before handing over to Kerr for the remainder of the weekend.

"I'm just looking forward to getting back out on-track and picking up where we left off in Australia in last season," stated Kerr eagerly. "The car worked well last time we raced there and I believe we're more advanced in our set-ups now so hopefully with that we'll steer clear of some of the bad luck that's blighted us over the last couple of races and get back on the board with a decent points haul."

A1 Team Great Britain Team Principal John Surtees is equally confident of a return to form heading into this weekend's A1GP races. "It's frustrating to have lost ground in the title chase not least when we've clearly been able to demonstrate the competitiveness of the car," said Surtees. "Robbie was crashed into in the Sprint race in New Zealand which cost us the potential of a points scoring finish then the car's battery exploded in the Feature race when Robbie was again sitting comfortably in the points. Hopefully we can utilize Oliver's run in Friday's rookie session to iron-out any issues with the car and give Robbie the best possible opportunity to revitalize our title aspirations."

Sunday's Sprint race starts at 11am at Eastern Creek (1am GMT Sunday) with the Feature race starting at 3pm local time (5am GMT Sunday). Sky Sports 3 will broadcast all the action from Australia on Sunday 4th February -- please check www.skysports.com for further details.

-credit: team gbr

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Series A1GP
Drivers Robbie Kerr , Oliver Jarvis , John Surtees