TOP EIGHT NÃœRBURGRING FINISH FOR PICCIONE The classic 5.148km Nu rburgring track is one of Clivio Piccione's favourite tracks, having achieved a fantastic, closely fought race win there last year, so he was hoping for good things from this ...
TOP EIGHT NÜRBURGRING FINISH FOR PICCIONE
The classic 5.148km Nu rburgring track is one of Clivio Piccione's favourite tracks, having achieved a fantastic, closely fought race win there last year, so he was hoping for good things from this weekend's round 3 of the 2006 series. A top eight finish today, his best result of the year so far, was not as good as he or the DPR Direxiv team would have liked, but it is a definite step in the right direction.
Team Principal David Price summed up the weekend: "Yesterday wasn't our finest day as we made too many mistakes and, to be honest, is one I don't want to dwell on. Today, however, was much improved. We would have had both cars finish in the top ten without Zuber having hit Olivier [Pla]. We were definitely quick enough and are now in a more buoyant mood going forward to Barcelona."
Race 1 -- Saturday, 6th May
It didn't start well for the team when several drivers, including Frenchman Olivier Pla, stalled on the dummy grid. A misinterpretation of the rules saw Olivier and an iSport car take up their original positions on the grid and they were both subsequently penalised with a drive through penalty for overtaking on the formation lap. He struggled through from the back of the field to finish in 15th place.
Clivio Piccione, who had narrowly missed out on a starting position on the front row of the grid, was running well until a problem with his pit stop and a subsequent driver error lost him time and placings. He fought back from those misfortunes to finish in 11th place.
Race 2 -- Sunday, 7th May
Piccione did well to avoid a stalled Villa on the grid and his avoidance move lost him a little time.
He soon moved up to 8th position until a small error allowed Piquet to pass him. The latter's non-finish meant that Clivio re-claimed his 8th place, his best result of the season so far. Olivier Pla suffered at the hands of another driver for the second race in a row, a clash with Zuber causing rear suspension damage to the DPR Direxiv car and retirement after just 5 laps. Zuber had also touched Piccione so the team was in some ways fortunate not to have both cars damaged.
Clivio Piccione: "We definitely improved the car this weekend and it's all moving in the right direction. I was on a demon lap in qualifying on Friday but made a mistake at the last chicane which took away a sure front row place. I'm really disappointed with myself for that. From there on we had to play catch up but I had a good race yesterday until the delayed pit stop. When I came out of the pits I pushed too hard, trying to make up time, and went off the track. A water temperature alarm towards the end of today's race was a bit worrying as I was determined to get another finish. I am sure we are going to have a good race at Barcelona, and we definitely deserve to be in the points."
Olivier Pla: "Yesterday I started from the back but made up quite a lot of places up to p12. By the end of the race I was struggling with our tyres so could not get any further forward. We need to work on the consistency of our tyre wear through the races. For today, I had just overtaken Zuber when he hit me in the rear and bent my lower rear wishbone. It's a shame because the car was much better today and I should have liked to do a whole race!"