Javier Villa will start from the sixth row of the grid in tomorrow's Feature Race of the GP2 Series at the Monaco Grand Prix, after setting the 11th fastest time in today's qualifiying session. The first contact for the GP2 drivers with the ever...
Javier Villa will start from the sixth row of the grid in tomorrow's Feature Race of the GP2 Series at the Monaco Grand Prix, after setting the 11th fastest time in today's qualifiying session.
The first contact for the GP2 drivers with the ever difficult and spectacular street circuit of Monaco took place in the morning's free practice session, used by all the teams to setup their cars for qualifying and the races, with Villa getting the seventh best time, just a couple of tenths away from the fourth man.
As usual in GP2, and even more at Monaco, the qualifying session was tremendously close and was decided virtually in the last few seconds, the final time of each driver depending on whether they found traffic or yellow flags in their last attempt. With his first set of tires, Villa was initially placed in second position, though as the session progressed the track was getting faster and the laptimes were improving, so he was losing positions in the provisional timelist.
Then the Asturian fitted his second set of supersoft rubber and in spite of losing some tenths in the final sector of the circuit, because he was closing on Kobayashi, he notably improved his time and got up to fourth position and with a chance to do one more fast lap. Unfortunately Javi could not take advantage of this last opportunity since had to lift due to yellow flags on the track. Thus his chances of improving in the final moments were ruined by only a few seconds, since instants later, when he was entering the pits, the yellow flags were gone, to the advantage of the drivers who were running after him and who could improve their times, relegating Javi to the eleventh position with the clock reaching zero.
Tomorrow, starting from the sixth row, the target for Villa will be to get into the fight for the points-scoring positions and to look for the best possible situation for Saturday's race, when the starting order is obtained by reversing the order of the first eight positions at the end of the Feature Race. Alhough the qualification has not been as good as Javier and his team were expecting, nothing is lost yet and tomorrow's race will definitely decide most of the options for the young Spaniard on the Monegasque circuit.
Javier Villa's own words: "At the end of the day I am 11th, which it is not what we were expecting here, especially given how fast I was running. With the first set of tires I was second, then I was falling down the list so I used the second set and came fourth in spite of losing a bit closing on Kobayashi in the third sector. Then I left a lap to find some gaps in the traffic, but I had to do the next two laps under yellow flags and I had to enter the pits, wihle the people who did the time just afterwards were faster and in the last moments I suddenly lost five positions. But well, that's how things are here, tomorrow I will try to do my best, get some points and prepare for Saturday's race."