Nelson Piquet dominated the delayed fourth round of the championship to take a comfortable victory at Snetterton on Saturday evening. The Brazilian driver muscled his way to the front in the opening few corners and was never headed for the rest of...
Nelson Piquet dominated the delayed fourth round of the championship to take a comfortable victory at Snetterton on Saturday evening. The Brazilian driver muscled his way to the front in the opening few corners and was never headed for the rest of the race, which was carried over from an abandoned meeting earlier in the year.
"I had to be careful in the early stages of the race and not make any mistakes", said Piquet. "I led from the beginning and stayed in front and that is how I want to continue," he added, having also set the fastest lap by three tenths of a second.
Power, third on the grid, and Piquet, second, both made great getaways and were alongside pole-sitter Danilo Dirani going into the first corner. Dirani backed off first leaving the other two to battle for the lead and, as the pair drifted wide, Power ran into the dirt and lost momentum, handing the lead to Piquet.
Rossiter had an appalling start from fifth place and stalled on the line - he was able to restart the engine but dropped slowly down the field and retired with suspected engine problems. There was confusion behind as several cars ran wide in the confusion at the first corner and Ernesto Viso, in thirteenth, spun to the back of the field.
Piquet now set about building on his lead and he quickly established up a two second gap over the pursuing Adam Carroll, who had made a great start to move up to second from sixth on the grid, with Dirani close behind in third and Danny Watts in fourth up from seventh at the start.
Piquet's lead was completely eroded at the midway point as the safety car was deployed because both Stephen Jelly and Vasilije Calasan had stopped out on the circuit three laps previously. The safety car remained out for three laps and this distance was added to the total race length to increase it to 23 laps.
Piquet held his lead at the restart and again he and Carroll slowly pulled away from Dirani and Di Grassi who were battling closely for third. Di Grassi pulled alongside Dirani along the Revett straight on lap 18 and bravely passed by under braking around the outside into the Esses to move up to third place.
There was also a battle for tenth place with the recovering Power heading a queue of cars consisting of James Walker, Ernesto Viso, Will Davison and Karun Chandhock all covered by less than three seconds although none were able to get close enough to make a serious attempt to pass.
Piquet eventually crossed the line to take his first win of the year by just under two seconds ahead of Carroll, Di Grassi, Dirani and Watts. Piquet's win moves him into first place in the championship, four points ahead of Rossiter who failed to score.