Nobody has been able to challenge Nico Rosberg's domination of the last three rounds of the GP2 series, and the German took a convincing home victory at Hockenheim. It was also the first 1-2 team finish in the series, with the second place of ...
Nobody has been able to challenge Nico Rosberg's domination of the last three rounds of the GP2 series, and the German took a convincing home victory at Hockenheim. It was also the first 1-2 team finish in the series, with the second place of teammate Alexander Premat. Brazilian Nelson A. Piquet took the last step of the podium.
Rosberg was overwhelming from the green light, jumping into the lead from pole position, and he never looked back. "Before the race I was a bit shaky because of the start, but even there we found something that helps us a lot, so we are just really getting it together now. We found another thing for the race today, and that helps the race a lot, and it's just coming together really well", commented the winner.
On lap two Rosberg set the fastest lap of the race, which his rivals could not match throughout the race, and continued with a controlled pace aboard his Dallara-Renault.
"We've just really improved the car race by race, and it's really at a stage now where I must say it's working really well, and that just also makes it really good for me to drive and it improves my driving because I can really get an extra bit out of myself", he said.
Rosberg only lost the lead for a couple of laps to Scott Speed when he came to pits on lap 12th. "We did a pitstop that was a bit on the safe side, but I knew we had a good gap so I just told myself to chill out and take it easy, and it was no problem at all", Nico mentioned.
Today's winner will start from eighth place on race two of Sunday. He has a different race ahead: "Tomorrow's going to be very interesting, I think, because we're really quick -- I'm just going to try and get a good start and then be careful with everything".
Rosberg has now won three of the last four races that the series disputed.
Premat repeated his best result of the season, matching the second place on race two in San Marino. "Is a really good result for me and for the team, because I think that Nico and I did a really good job so far this weekend, for this race, for qualifying, for everything. And also for me it is fantastic for me to go up in the championship", Premat mentioned
The pit stop strategy finally paid off for Premat and was the key for him to take second place. "We spoke together, the engineers and me, and it was really the best decision", he said.
Premat was the protagonist alongside Speed and Piquet of a great fight for the podium places that he explains: "After the stop my steering was bent and I spoke to my engineers and told them -- it was really hard in the first corner, and after that I lost a lot of time, especially in the fast corners! And then Scott Speed and Piquet came up to me, so for sure it was really hard -- I was braking hard and try just to stay ahead of them".
The last time that Piquet had scored points had been in Nurburgring, also with a third place. After that came four races of bad results for the Brazilian, but that streak ended today with it third podium of the season.
"I'm very happy - I think we deserved being at least on the podium. When I started the race today my wish was to finish on the top three and it worked", Piquet stated.
The 2004 British Formula 3 champion had a strong start from eighth place and jumped to fifth in the very first move. "I think the start was really good, the first lap was really good, and then I made no mistakes in the race".
The Brazilian kept pushing harder and harder, and eventually reached the fight for the podium in the second part of the race against Premat and Speed.
Piquet expects to close the weekend on Sunday with another strong result that will allow him to advance in the championship: "I'm starting sixth, and today I started eighth and didn't think I could get a podium. So tomorrow my goal is for sure to do a podium finish -- a podium for me tomorrow would be the best thing in the world for me".
After starting ninth the race, Heikki Kovalainen arrived at the finish in fifth place and leads the standings with 68 points. Rosberg keeps getting closer with 58 followed by Speed, 46; Adam Carroll, 34; Gianmaria Bruni, 33 and Premat with 32 units.
With the 1-2, ART has jumped to the lead in the teams championship with 90 points, leaving Arden International behind with 80. iSport leads by one point (48 to 47) the battle for third place against Super Nova.
Ernesto Viso, who ended up seventh in the track today, was disqualified after his car was found to be underweight. This situation means that Olivier Pla takes eighth place and will start from the pole on tomorrow's sprint race, as he did in Silverstone, which gave him his first victory in GP2. We'll see what happens tomorrow ...