Dani Clos pulled out a crushing display of speed and determination to dominate this morning's sprint race in Istanbul, running away for a simple win ahead of Luiz Razia and Giedo van der Garde. The victory was set up when the lights went out...
Dani Clos pulled out a crushing display of speed and determination to dominate this morning's sprint race in Istanbul, running away for a simple win ahead of Luiz Razia and Giedo van der Garde.
The victory was set up when the lights went out with a smart getaway from the grid ahead of teammate and fellow front row starter Christian Vietoris, who had no choice but to slip in behind and provide cover from hard charging attacks by Razia and van der Garde: the pair had easily dispatched Michael Herck and were already looking for more, with Davide Valsecchi also dispatching the Romanian on the open lap.
With the Racing Engineering pair pulling away at the front the action was fairly static in the top ten, but further back Sergio Perez was determined to make up for his bitter disappointment but overtaking his rivals with ease: after only two laps he had pushed up from last on the grid to P12, and was clearly not content with his efforts yet.
Valsecchi and Herck's fierce fight soon caught up to van der Garde, with the Italian running alongside his Dutch rival a number of times but was just unable to make it stick, while Sam Bird in seventh was soon coming under all sorts of pressure from the Dams pair and Perez, providing some hugely entertaining closing laps for the fans.
But when the chequered flag dropped it was Clos who was able to record a maiden victory 9 seconds ahead of Razia, who picked up second when Vietoris drifted to a halt with a mechanical gremlin, while van der Garde soaked up the pressure to bring home a podium for his hungry Addax team. Valsecchi and Herck followed the Dutchman nose to tail, while yesterday's winner Pastor Maldonado had a lonely race to bring home the final point for sixth place ahead of hard charging title rival Perez in seventh.
The result put Clos back into the championship mix, following Maldonado 27 points to 23, with Razia right behind on 20 points and Perez left with no reward for his efforts to stand on 17 as the field looks ahead to the next round in Valencia.