Zandvoort: Team Malaysia race report

FASTEST LAP CONSOLATION FOR A1 TEAM MALAYSIA A1 Team Malaysia posted fastest lap of the main Feature race at the first round of the new season of A1GP World Cup of Motorsport today in Zandvoort, a small consolation for the team after finishing...

FASTEST LAP CONSOLATION FOR A1 TEAM MALAYSIA

A1 Team Malaysia posted fastest lap of the main Feature race at the first round of the new season of A1GP World Cup of Motorsport today in Zandvoort, a small consolation for the team after finishing 17th in the race.

In the 12 lap, 20 minute sprint race A1 Team Malaysia started on slick tyres, along with the rest of the field, in damp, drying conditions. From 10th place, Yoong made a good rolling start and held position through the first part of the lap, until dropping back by the end of the opener. He maintained position in the early part of the race, but lost out to the China car to be 12th on the track, the team's final finishing position in the first race of the day.

The grid for the second (Feature) race is determined by a unique points-scoring position that allocates points according to teams' finishing position, qualifying position and lap times in the Sprint race. One point is awarded to the winner, two to the runner-up, three to the third-placed finisher, running down to the 23rd classified finisher, who will be awarded 23 points. The same points system is applied to the qualifying and fastest lap classifications. The points are then added together to determine the grid. This system gave Malaysia its 11th place start.

Yoong's bid to improve on his Sprint race finish was nearly over before the Malaysian driver had a chance to race, with a parade lap stall from Switzerland in front of the team, causing Yoong to take avoiding action, but in the process he clipped his front wheel against the Swiss car and broke a front wishbone.

Yoong was able to reach the pits and, after rapid repairs, he was able to join the race, four laps down. The aim for the Malaysian team was to complete the distance and gain valuable data for next week's race, which Yoong achieved, along the way proving how competitive the team is by recording the fastest lap of the race.

At the end of the 41 lap, timed 70 minute race, Yoong had driven from the back of the grid to 17th.

Yoong said after the races, "In the first race we were struggling with understeer which was a problem we had for much of the weekend, but we made some changes after the Sprint and the car felt much better. I think we would have been reasonably quick and competitive, but I made a mistake on the grid and effectively threw it all away. At the start of the parade lap the car in front of me stalled and trying to get round it I clipped the Team Switzerland car broke my car's wishbone. The guys did a great job to get me back out only losing four laps, but we had lost too much time. On a positive note, we recorded the races fastest lap, so we know we do have a competitive car."

Jack Cunningham, Chief Executive, A1 Team Malaysia, adds, "I'm pleased that we took away the fastest lap in the Feature race, as it gives us some indication that we have the car and the performance to be a challenger in this Series this season. It's unfortunate that the grid problem changed our prospects, but we used the race wisely, giving Alex a race distance, which will help us in our preparations for the next race in Brno in a week's time."

-credit: www.a1teammalaysia.com.my

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Series A1GP
Drivers Jack Cunningham