The qualifying session for round three of the A1GP World Cup of Motorsport took place today at the Sepang International Circuit in Malaysia. A1 Team Brazil will line up on the eighth row of the grid for the Sprint race and the sixth row for the ...
The qualifying session for round three of the A1GP World Cup of Motorsport took place today at the Sepang International Circuit in Malaysia. A1 Team Brazil will line up on the eighth row of the grid for the Sprint race and the sixth row for the Feature race after Felipe Guimaraes set the 15th and 12th quickest times respectively in qualifying.
This morning's final practice unfortunately followed on in terms of performance as the Friday practice sessions. Despite running similar car set-ups to some of the front running cars, Felipe continued to suffer from a fundamental car problem, which is causing severe oversteer under braking. His lap times reflected this and the team struggled, putting them on the back foot for qualifying.
In the first of two qualifying sessions for the Sprint race, there was an unfortunate red flag incident early on after Korea spun on the final corner. With only two minutes of track time left when the circuit was reopened, all the teams headed out, with Brazil at the back of the pack. Along with four other drivers, he was unable to complete his outlap before the chequered flag, so his time was not counted, leaving his Sprint position all down to the second segment. He headed out half way into that segment on a fairly quiet track, crossing the line with a lap time of 1:50.085. As the track quickly improved through each session, he was down to 15th once all the drivers had set their times, setting himself up on the eighth row for the Sprint.
Felipe headed out five minutes before the end of the first segment of Feature qualifying on a fairly clear track and set a time of 1:50.078, putting him in provisional 13th position. In the final segment he headed out on new rubber and used his PowerBoost for the lap -- a new feature for A1GP qualifying which allows a team to select one of the four qualifying laps to utilise the extra 60bhp. He put together a good lap, setting a time of 1:48.323 to move him up to 12th position, putting him on the sixth row for the Feature.
Felipe Guimaraes: "We managed to make a bit of an improvement in qualifying and we were definitely much better by the last session. Unfortunately I braked a little early in the first corner of that lap and I lost around four tenths but the rest of the lap was really good so I'm quite happy and confident for tomorrow."
Emerson Fittipaldi, Team Principal: "After practice this morning we base-lined the car and in my opinion Felipe did a good lap in the final session of qualifying. He lost some time in sector one but sectors two and three were very good so he should have been in the top ten. We have lost a lot of running time this weekend which all started with the electrical problem on Friday morning so I am happy with Felipe's qualifying performance. It is difficult to pass here but I think if he has a good race we have a good chance of finishing in a strong points position."
Sprint Race Qualifying
1. Switzerland 1:47.154
2. France +0.593
3. New Zealand +0.625
15. Brazil +2.931
Feature Race Qualifying
1. Ireland 1:47.124
2. Great Britain +0.216
3. Lebanon +0.521
12. Brazil +1.199
Brazil - Free Practice 3
Laps: 18 Position: 19th Fastest Lap: 1:51.494 (+3.063)