WICKENS SECURES RUNNER-UP IN CHAMPIONSHIP WITH SECOND PLACE Status Grand Prix driver Robert Wickens took second place in a thrilling GP3 Series race at Monza to cement his second position in the final drivers' standings. The...
WICKENS SECURES RUNNER-UP IN CHAMPIONSHIP WITH SECOND PLACE
Status Grand Prix driver Robert Wickens took second place in a thrilling GP3 Series race at Monza to cement his second position in the final drivers' standings.
The famous Italian circuit's layout of long straights interspersed with three tight chicanes produced an incredible spectacle of a 30-car train changing positions on every lap. A lightning start from fifth on the grid elevated Wickens to second by the first corner, and a lap he later he passed newly-crowned champion Esteban Gutierrez for the lead. He then exchanged the advantage several times with Nico Muller, before Gutierrez joined the duo into a three-way squeeze approaching the Ascari chicane, forcing Wickens on the grass and knocking him back to third.
Five laps later he had worked his way back into the lead, but Gutierrez got into his slipstream a lap later and took the lead. Over the final four laps Wickens did all he could but was unable to get a tow behind Gutierrez's car and had to settle for second place and a secure runner-up championship position.
Daniel Morad had an equally frenetic race. From ninth on the grid, he was unfortunate to get boxed in at the first turn and dropped to fifteenth after another car made contact. The GMH Motorsport-backed driver then made a determined fight back up the midfield to finish ninth, just one position outside of the points.
Marussia Motors development driver Ivan Lukashevich also thrived in the midfield dogfight, coming from 30th on the grid and showing good speed as he picked off numerous car to rise to a 19th place finish.
The Driver's View
Robert Wickens (CAN): Result: 2nd. Best lap: 1m45.52s, +0.395s.
"Once Esteban had won the title in qualifying, the goal was to secure second place in the drivers' standings, so the result is satisfying. I tried all the tactics out front: leading, running behind the leader, but once Esteban got a tow and made it stick with four laps to go, I just couldn't get the tow I needed to get back at him."
Daniel Morad (LIB): Result: 9th. Best lap: 1m45.77s, +0.643s.
"It was a tough race. I got squeezed out at the first corner, and then a car hit me and I had damage at the front end which affected the car progressively more through the race. In the end I was pleased to pass two cars in the final two laps and get a result, but still just missed out on points."
Ivan Lukashevich (RUS): Result: 2nd. Best lap: 1m45.96s, +0.861s.
"This was a good race for me. As everyone's tyres went off in the second half of the race, my car got ever better and I made several places. The slipstreaming was incredible, and I'm looking forward to tomorrow."
-source: status gp