NEWGARDEN ENDURES CHAOTIC RACE Josef Newgarden retired from the first GP3 Series race at Hockenheim, after he was hit from behind on the last lap, and classified as finishing in 18th place. Lining up on pole for the first time in his GP3...
NEWGARDEN ENDURES CHAOTIC RACE
Josef Newgarden retired from the first GP3 Series race at Hockenheim, after he was hit from behind on the last lap, and classified as finishing in 18th place.
Lining up on pole for the first time in his GP3 career, the 19 year-old American refused to let the pressure get to him, despite having to deal with an aborted start. Newgarden led the field for a second formation lap, before getting away well when the race finally got started. However, Newgarden soon found himself under attack from the more experienced Robert Wickens (Status Grand Prix), who soon managed to get past the Carlin car. It wasn't long before Newgarden was defending his position from third placed Renger van der Zander (RSC Muecke Motorsport). Just as van der Zander got past the young American, the safety car was deployed for the second time.
Green flag racing got underway at the start of lap seven and once again Newgarden was forced to act defensively. Struggling for speed down the straight, the 19 year-old had dropped further down the order but was hanging on to eighth place and the reverse grid pole for race two. On the final lap, Robert Merhi (Atech CRS GP) pushed Newgarden out of the race and into retirement.
"The team has worked really hard and I'd hoped we would have a strong result here at Hockenheim," said Newgarden, "but we had another tough race. This is a super competitive series and we just have to keep trying - I know the results will come."
Carlin's Racing Director, Trevor Carlin, said, "Obviously this is a very disappointing result based on Josef's pace in qualifying. He did a great job to handle the pressure of effectively two race starts but seemed to lack pace down the straights which we are looking into. To be taken out of eighth place on the last lap adds insult to injury."
Newgarden will line-up in 18th position for race two - scheduled for 09:25 local time on Sunday morning.