Monza, Italy, Following his impressive second season in the GP2 Series, Formula 1's official feeder formula, India's Karun Chandhok picked up the award for the "best driving style" at a glittering ceremony at the Sporting Club Monza in Italy on ...
Monza, Italy, Following his impressive second season in the GP2 Series, Formula 1's official feeder formula, India's Karun Chandhok picked up the award for the "best driving style" at a glittering ceremony at the Sporting Club Monza in Italy on Sunday evening.
The 24-year-old from Chennai, who is backed by Red Bull, Punj Lloyd, JK Tyre, Amaron, ICSA Logistics and Sidvin, ended the 20-race season in the top 10 in points. His year was highlighted by victory at Hockenheim in Germany, as well as podiums at classic grand prix venues Monaco and Silverstone for his iSport International team.
"Overall, it's been a positive season. I am very pleased with the progress I have made this year," said Chandhok. "Winning my second GP2 race was a big highlight, and having been a regular front runner this year has put me in a good position in the que of drivers trying to break into Formula 1.
"To win the award for the 'best driving style' is a fantastic way to end the season, and one I feel really proud of. It was the only award that was voted for by the fans of the championship on the GP2 website which makes it more special."
"Looking back, I'm a bit frustrated that the second half of the season didn't deliver as much as it promised points-wise, and our terrible luck on Sundays, in the sprint races, really hurt my points total. In the middle of the year in Budapest we were right in the fight for the top 5, but since then our luck changed and 7 non-scores put me on the back foot. It's particularly frustrating since 5 of those non-scores were out of my control but such is life. I learnt a lot this year and will carry that into next season."
Rather than resting on his laurels he has earned this year, Karun is now embarking on a three-week intensive fitness camp in Italy as his plans for 2009 come together. "I'd like to thank everyone at iSport International. They are a great team of guys, and I'd also like to wish Bruno Senna the best of luck for the future. I really enjoyed working with him this year and I think we pushed each other hard. Of course, I couldn't have done it all without the support of our partners Red Bull, Punj Lloyd, JK Tyre, Amaron, ICSA Logistics and Sidvin so thank you to all of them."
Looking to the future Karun said "At the moment it's a bit too early to have confirmation of my program for 2009. This year there were very limited options in terms of race seats in Formula 1 so it looks like the best option for me in 2009 would be to be a test driver in Formula 1 and gain some experience in preparation for 2010. The test driving role these days is quite limited so I think it will be important to combine that with a season of GP2 to ensure that I am racing often at a highly competitive level. We are in discussion with Formula 1 and GP2 teams in order to put this program in place I am optimistic that that by the end of November, I will have a clearer idea on things."