Arden press release
Kral And Palmer End GP2 Campaign On A Solid Note
The 2011 GP2 Series ended at Monza, Italy, this morning and Arden team-mates Josef Kral and Jolyon Palmer concluded their year with solid, consistent drives as they endeavoured to repair the unfortunate consequences of yesterday’s feature race.
The pair were condemned to the back of the grid this morning, following their early elimination on Saturday (when both were innocent parties in a multiple accident at the first chicane). After starting 24th (Kral) and 25th, they focused on making up as many places as possible. While overtaking proved fairly straightforward in the previous GP3 race, it was a much tougher task in GP2: Kral and Palmer moved up to 17th and 19th on the opening lap... and were still in the same positions at the end. It was a low-key end to a season that has blended frequent promise with motorsport’s inevitable frustrations.
“I got off the line well, but the car ahead stalled and I had to take to the dirt to avoid contact. I was quite close to the pit wall, and getting lots of wheelspin, so lost a few places on the run to the first turn. I managed to recover most of those during the course of the opening lap, but then the race settled down. I made several attempts to pass Rodolfo Gonzalez... and it was in the middle of one of those that Davide Valsecchi passed me! It didn’t help that I suffered significant rear tyre wear this morning – there wasn’t much rubber left at the end – and it’s a shame that I haven’t really been able to exploit the car’s potential this weekend.
“Overall, though, it has been a tough year with some very positive moments and the team has done a great job. It is the first time I have completed a full GP2 campaign and I believe I’m a better driver now than I was when the season began five months ago.”
“I gained a few positions in the early stages, but then ran wide at Lesmo 2 while trying to keep Davide Valsecchi behind me. After that I had a long race trying to make up time on the group in front – there’s not much else to say, really. I’m grateful to everyone at Arden for what has been a very enjoyable season, on and off the circuit. I have learned many valuable lessons and expect to return stronger next year.”