DPR MAKING PROGRESS IN HUNGARY The Hungarian stop on the GP2 calendar began well for the David Price Racing (DPR) team with Diego Nunes having a solid first practice session, while team mate Michael Herck also showed improvement as he continues...
DPR MAKING PROGRESS IN HUNGARY
The Hungarian stop on the GP2 calendar began well for the David Price Racing (DPR) team with Diego Nunes having a solid first practice session, while team mate Michael Herck also showed improvement as he continues to play catch up after starting his season three events into this year's championship. Nunes posted his best qualifying performance of the season so far yesterday, taking 14th place for today's Feature race, and he ran well, at a track renowned for limited overtaking, to finish 12th, his second best Feature race finish this season. Herck was forced to retire after an off track excursion which caused suspension damage.
The DPR team had already suffered drama before the crew even reached the circuit today, with six of the team members involved in a car crash on the motorway en route to the Hungaroring. Three of the crew were taken to hospital, but luckily escaped injury and were able to return to the hotel to rest and are expected to be back for the Sprint race tomorrow, while the other three were able to take up their duties trackside.
Although both Nunes and Herck both made good starts, in the fight through the opening sequence of corners they lost a place a piece, to lie 15th and 23rd respectively after the opening lap. Nunes fought back to regain 14th on the second lap, and was then up to 13th after three laps. Further back Herck was also moving forward and was up to 19th by the end of lap three.
The pits opened on lap six, with most of the teams keeping their cars out on track initially, but before long the front runners began pitting, while DPR opted to keep both cars out on the first set of tyres slightly deeper into the race.
Nunes made his pit stop with the DPR crew working fast so that he was quickly back out on track to battle for a top ten position. Herck pitted on lap 12, but the young DPR driver had a brush with the armco at the tight pit entrance as he headed towards the pits, which damaged the front left suspension of the car, forcing Herck into retirement.
With new tyres Nunes continued to chase down Kobayashi, but with limited overtaking opportunities at this Hungarian track, it was a tough job for the young Brazilian. He made a number of moves on the Japanese driver but couldn't make any of them stick, the pair closely matched in their GP2 machines. Vitaly Petrov retired from further up the order to promote Nunes to 12th, and with nine laps to go all of Nunes' hard work hounding Kobayashi paid off, as he made a clean move to take 11th place from him. Sakon Yamomoto was the Brazilian's next target, but with only a few laps remaining, attempted to take Yamomoto, but ended up running wide, dropping back behind Kobayashi to lie 12th, his finish position at the chequered flag.
David Price, Team Principal, said at the end of today's race, "Our day didn't start well today and we're thankful that there were no serious injuries.
"We'd hoped to make it into the top ten today and although we didn't quite do it, we're not far outside it, so we're hoping to move further forwards in tomorrow's race with Diego. Michael was driving well this weekend, but was just caught out with the tight pit lane entrance, which was disappointing, as he'll now be starting at the back for tomorrow. We'll have our full crew with us tomorrow and we'll be ready to make it into the top ten with Diego."
The second of the two GP2 races in Hungary takes place tomorrow morning, with the Series playing a supporting role to the FIA Formula One World championship.