Derek Hill US GP report

Race One Saturday 15.00 Hours One hour after the Formula One qualifying for the first US Grand Prix at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, the Porsche Supercup cars formed up on the grid to start the first race of the weekend. Derek made a great...

Race One Saturday 15.00 Hours

One hour after the Formula One qualifying for the first US Grand Prix at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, the Porsche Supercup cars formed up on the grid to start the first race of the weekend.

Derek made a great start from 19th on the grid and went into the first corner in 17th position. Taking further advantage with an overtaking move and a couple of cars spinning in front of him he completed lap one in 14th place.

Settling into a nice rhythm Derek was lapping at a strong pace with times in the late 1:39 second range and had taken 13th place when, due to a gearbox failure, he had to retire on lap 8.

Race Two Sunday 09.20 Hours

Derek lined up 17th on the grid, in front of the American legends Mario Andretti and Al Unser Jr., all three drivers receiving a phenomenal reception from the full grandstands.

From the start Derek again made a phenomenal getaway and entered the first corner in 14th position. Derek then enjoyed a great Supercup-style battle, chasing down a couple of well known regulars - Heger, Henzler and Eichman. Derek fighting his way through to 11th place. by lap 7.

Another Supercup regular Sascha Massen followed in Derek's trail and mounted an aggressive but fair attack for several laps, the two drivers enjoying the dice with Derek gradually pulling away and starting to close on the 10th placed car.

Closing the gap to the tenth place car from 3.7 seconds to 1.5 seconds by lap 14, Derek was pushing hard to take the tenth position, when he ran just a little wide on turn four dropping his offside wheel onto the grass and spinning into retirement.

"The biggest thrill this weekend has for sure been sitting on the grid, along with Mario and Little Al, here at Indy with the largest number of American racing fans I have ever competed in front of. Saturdays race was not so good, I got away OK and made a few places but had to retire with another problem with the gearbox.

But today's race was great, until the spin and slight damage to the car at the end. I had a good start and was making places just about everywhere on the track. Once I was past a couple of white cars and settled into the battle with Sascha I really thought we could be in the top ten.

The battle with Sascha was very fair and he pushed me hard, but I managed to make the break and was closing on the tenth place guy when I just stepped a couple of inches onto the wet grass and that was that. The rear tyres get used really hard in these cars and the grip levels go away very quickly towards the end of the race. Unfortunately that caught me out.

Overall it has been a fantastic weekend to race here at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway for the first time in front of what I hear was the biggest Grand Prix crowd ever and working with Horst Farnbacher from Farnbacher Racing and all the people at Porsche Motorsport has been really great. Now I am looking forward to returning to Europe and the start of my winter testing program in Formula 3000 for the 2001 season," Derek said from Indy Monday morning.

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About this article
Series General
Drivers Derek Hill , Al Unser Jr.