RAPID PACE FOR QUAIFE-HOBBS IN ISTANBUL Adrian Quaife-Hobbs once again showed an impressive turn of speed in the latest rounds of the GP3 Series at Istanbul this weekend, but sadly his race distance consisted of just three laps in the second...
RAPID PACE FOR QUAIFE-HOBBS IN ISTANBUL
Adrian Quaife-Hobbs once again showed an impressive turn of speed in the latest rounds of the GP3 Series at Istanbul this weekend, but sadly his race distance consisted of just three laps in the second race on Sunday.
The 19 year-old from Tonbridge was making his first appearance at the Turkish track, and in the first half-hour test session, an early fast pace was brought to a premature finish when an electrical problem meant he couldn't change gear. This resulted in just four laps to acclimatise to the new circuit prior to the all-important qualifying session.
For that, the Manor Racing team had changed some electrical components ready for the session and Adrian went into the qualifying feeling confident of a strong performance. For much of the session his confident mood was not unreasonable as he topped the time sheets with the quickest lap.
However as he went on to start another flying lap on new tyres, Adrian made a rare mistake while around three tenths of a second quicker on the first two sectors. The next lap, with high hopes of being able to put that right and establish the fastest lap, the yellow flags were brought out when a car went off, preventing Adrian from improving.
By the time the green flags were shown the other drivers had gone quicker, and with Adrian's tyres past their best, he dropped to fourth to line up on the second row for the opening race.
As the lights went green to signal the start of the race Adrian dropped the clutch but didn't even get off the line as both driveshafts snapped ending his race before it had started.
With the reverse grid system in place for race two, Adrian lined up last of the 30 runners and with it all to do in the race. A storming start saw Adrian pass ten cars on the opening lap and was up into 15th place by the end of lap two.
On lap three while attempting to pass the 14th placed car, Adrian's race again came to an early finish when the car in front suddenly changed direction, coming across into the front of Adrian's car which launched it into the air and broke the suspension.
"It's disappointing not to finish either race but again the pace was really there this weekend," said Adrian. "In qualifying I was very confident of getting pole and had there not been a yellow flag on my quick lap, I think I could have done it.
"However the mechanical problem in race one was one of those things unfortunately and in the second, there was nothing I could do to avoid the collision which broke the suspension and ended my race on the spot. Once again the team did a fantastic job and we head to the next race determined to get the results we deserve."
The next double-header race will take place at Valencia in Spain over the weekend of 26/27 June.