STRONG RACE PERFORMANCE FROM BRATT DURING BAHRAIN OPENER Party Poker Racing-backed GP2 Asia Series competitor Will Bratt delivered a typically strong race performance at Bahrain International Circuit earlier today, Saturday, 13th March, to...
STRONG RACE PERFORMANCE FROM BRATT DURING BAHRAIN OPENER
Party Poker Racing-backed GP2 Asia Series competitor Will Bratt delivered a typically strong race performance at Bahrain International Circuit earlier today, Saturday, 13th March, to secure a fine top 15 finish during the penultimate encounter of the 2009/2010 season.
Racing in-front of the FIA Formula One World Championship team bosses during the final weekend of the current GP2 Asia campaign, the 21-year-old British racer produced a determined and assured drive this afternoon from the 11th row of the grid to claim his third top 15 result of the season.
During qualifying on Friday, 12th March, Will showed good pace through the first and third sectors of the lap but lost significant time through the new, twisty middle section and ended up with a best time of 2m09.611 seconds (174.957 km/h) -- an improvement of 1.3 seconds on his practice time.
Although the start to today's 29-lap Feature Race was fairly chaotic, Will got away well from the 11th row and did a great job threading his way through an action-packed Turn 1 unscathed. By the end of lap one he had gained three places and by the third tour was up into 16th position, a spot he held until his mandatory pit-stop at the end of lap six.
Running strongly throughout a relatively sedate middle section of the race, the action sparked back into life for Will on lap 22 when Christian Vietoris made contact with the rear of Plamen Kralev's car as the DAMS driver attempted to lap the Bulgarian.
This resulted in the deployment of the Safety Car and at the re-start on lap 26, with Will holding 16th position, the Party Poker Racing.com Scuderia Coloni rookie had a great opportunity to try and work his way into the top 15.
In the thick of the action, Will unfortunately slipped back a place but hit back superbly into Turn 1 on the penultimate lap by passing both Josef Kral and Max Chilton up the inside under braking to grab a richly deserved 15th position. In the end, he finished the race just a second shy of Spain's Dani Clos.
"I'm fairly pleased with today's result, we did struggle for pace but there was some good racing which I really enjoyed", commented Will, "My start was quite good, it was pretty chaotic as usual with cars darting around, but I was able to settle down well.
"Our pit-stop was ok but after the Safety Car during the last part of the race I was able to run pretty strongly in a group of about eight or nine cars which was a lot of fun. Hopefully tomorrow we can make some more progress and push for that first top 10 finish, it would be great to end my debut campaign in GP2 Asia that way."
The 2009/2010 GP2 Asia Series will come to a conclusion tomorrow, Sunday, 14th March, with the final race of the season set to commence at 10.50 local time. In the UK, British Eurosport 2 will carry live coverage of the 20-lap encounter from 07.45. Will starts round eight, the support race to the 2010 Gulf Air Bahrain Grand Prix, from 15th position on the grid.
-source: will bratt