Shanghai, China (Saturday 12 April, 2008) - Robert Wickens will make his final starts this season for A1 Team Canada from third (Sprint) and twelfth (Feature) respectively on the grid after qualifying today for Round 9 of the 2007-08 A1GP World...
Shanghai, China (Saturday 12 April, 2008) - Robert Wickens will make his final starts this season for A1 Team Canada from third (Sprint) and twelfth (Feature) respectively on the grid after qualifying today for Round 9 of the 2007-08 A1GP World Cup of Motorsport at China's stunning Shanghai International Circuit - the penultimate round of the third season of A1GP competition.
The 19-year-old, who missed Friday's practice at the 4.6km track having flown in from a test session in Europe, quickly got up to speed at the Formula One circuit taking over from fellow Ontario-native Daniel Morad who ran the Canadian entry in Friday's 'Rookie-Only' session and first official practice.
Wickens qualified third for Sunday morning's 20-minute Sprint race - putting the former Formula BMW USA Champion in line for a potential fifth podium finish for Canada in what's been a stellar rookie season in A1GP. Starting 12th for his final Feature event will prove to be more of a challenge for the A1GP race winner but having reached the podium from even further back this season, few would discount the stand-out Canadian to make an impression in the 70-minute race.
"I think that I'm normally pretty quick to learn a circuit but with a corner like the first one here it's tough to master," reflected Wickens post-qualifying. "I think I did a good job though as did the team and Daniel yesterday finding a decent baseline set-up for me to work with today. I made a mistake in Feature qualifying so that's disappointing and I'm probably going to be beating myself up for a while. That's said I'll take third for the Sprint and hopefully we'll come away with some good points. We just have to get our heads down and score as many points as we can in the Feature!"
Team Manager Simon Cayzer commented; "It was important to get Robert dialed into the circuit as quickly as possible this morning - something he's very good at! Overall in qualifying he did a great job considering the amount of track time he had compared to the other drivers. We had high expectations for his final run in Feature qualifying but he wasn't able to put the time together which was a bit disappointing. He's at the head of the pack for the Sprint which is good and despite his starting slot for the Feature, it's a long race with a couple of pit stops and he's proved he can climb the field. We've got a great shot at scoring points and I'm sure we'll have a competitive car out there."