Spa: DAMS race 1 report

Joy and frustration! Today, DAMS raced in the Feature race in the eighth round of the 2010 GP2 Series Championship on the daunting Spa-Francorchamps circuit in Belgium. The team had a new driver line-up, Jerôme d'Ambrosio, and Romain ...

Joy and frustration!

Today, DAMS raced in the Feature race in the eighth round of the 2010 GP2 Series Championship on the daunting Spa-Francorchamps circuit in Belgium. The team had a new driver line-up, Jerôme d'Ambrosio, and Romain Grosjean brought in to replace the injured Ho-Pin Tung.

D'Ambrosio was on pole in front of his home crowd, and he was determined not to let victory slip through his fingers. He made a good start and controlled the race despite intense pressure from championship leader, Pastor Maldonado, until his tyre change. The two drivers arrived in the pit lane at the same time, and the Venezuelan rejoined a few meters in front of the Belgian in the DAMS car. D'Ambrosio fought back, and after an aggressive piece of driving he sliced past Maldonado to retake the lead. He looked like he was on his way to certain victory when his engine failed only 4 laps from the chequered flag forcing him to retire.

Grosjean drove a solid, confident race. He sized up his rivals, attacked at the right moment, and did not hesitate to take risks to get past them. He finished the event in third place on the podium, and will start tomorrow's sprint race from sixth position on the grid.

Loïc David, Team Manager: "The fact that a DAMS car is on the podium for the first time in ages in GP2 should make us all happy. Unfortunately, what happened to Jerôme is as cruel as it is incomprehensible. He had the race won on his home circuit when the engine blew without any warning. But in any case, hats off to Romain who drove a faultless race and he can aim for points again tomorrow. Today, the DAMS team is back where it belongs - among the front-runners!"

Jerome d'Ambrosio
Race 1: pole, rtd
"When I suddenly felt a loss of power a few laps from the finish I thought that my world had caved in! I couldn't believe my bad luck. When it happened my retirement really hurt. Then, I managed to be a bit more objective and I realized that I had nothing to reproach myself. I was on pole, I was heading for victory and I set the fastest lap in the race on one of the most selective circuits in the championship. Despite the painful end, I think I've proved my worth, and that's what really matters. The team's as disappointed as I am and there's no way it's responsible for what happened. We'll just have to hope that luck will turn in our favour in the near future."

Romain Grosjean
Race 1: 6th on the grid, 3rd at the finish
"I'm on the podium in my third race with DAMS in the GP2 Series and that's very satisfying. At Hockenheim, our collaboration got off to a good start and we've reaped the first fruits today. If we'd qualified better we could have finished even further up the classification, and I'll try and fight my way up through the field again tomorrow. I'd be happy with another podium. Congratulations to Jerôme; he deserved to win today."

-source: dams

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About this article
Series FIA F2
Drivers Ho-Pin Tung , Pastor Maldonado , Jérôme d'Ambrosio , Romain Grosjean
Teams DAMS