GP2 »

Good and bad for Pantano, Senna.


The GP2 Series two main title protagonists endured very different qualifying sessions for the first event around the new Valencia 'street' circuit, with Giorgio Pantano backing up his practice pace with pole position and Bruno Senna struggling through various problems to eventually claim a fourth row spot.

The on-off, but long-awaited, weekend at the latest venue to join the schedule began in the best possible way for Racing Engineering team leader Pantano, who swept the opening day after the team's set-up work produced an immediately quick car. The Italian finished the free session more than half a second quicker than his closest followers, which made him the hot favourite to take the pole, and he duly delivered, going fastest with his first attempt at a quick lap, and returning to first place for good in the final part of the session, after an improvement in track conditions - and times - had seen him toppled from top spot.

"For me, it went quite well," an understated Pantano reported, "I am on pole after fighting with [Pastor] Maldonado and some other drivers. After what happened in Hungary, it is nice that we could show we are still on top.

"It's good to have the pole on a street circuit like this, as you can avoid the traffic at the start, and I would like to say thanks to the team as they gave me a great car. It was perfect."

The pole gave Racing Engineering and Pantano two valuable points to add to their respective tallies, increasing the Italian's advantage over Senna after the Brazilian had carved large chunks from the gap in Hungary three weeks ago.

"It was a fantastic job once again from Giorgio," team principal Alfonso de Orleans Borbón commented, "He has done an amazing job on a circuit which is new to everyone. Congratulations to all the boys in the team for the wonderful job. I am very proud of the work they are doing."

Senna, meanwhile, had to overcome a catalogue of troubles to secure his fourth row spot as circumstances contrived to deny the Brazilian his usual shot at pole.

"It has just been one of those days, really," he sighed, "This morning, I missed a few laps in the free practice session because of a throttle problem. It took a while to get the car fired up and I set off several laps after everybody else. When I did get going, the session was interrupted by red and yellow flags, so it was quite hard to settle into a rhythm, and I ran out of time to evaluate all the things we would ordinarily have tried.

"I tested an F3 car here in July, which helped me to learn the circuit, but it still takes time to adapt to driving a more powerful car and I felt I was slightly on the back foot when qualifying started. In the end, though, the main problem was traffic. That was the same for everybody, of course, but the session ended up being less about how quickly you could drive and more about traffic management. I never managed a clear lap, so that was that.

"Despite everything, however, the car felt okay and I'm confident I can obtain a decent result. It has been a frustrating day, but this is not meant to be an easy sport and I shall rise to the challenge tomorrow."


Related Pictures

Click on relevant pic to enlarge
Bruno Senna - iSport International   [pic credit: GP2 Series]
Artem Markelov (RUS, Russian Time) at Spa-Francorchamps, Spa, Belgium. Friday 22 August 2014. (Photo: Jed Leicester/GP2 Series Media Service.)
Dino Zamparelli (GBR, ART Grand Prix) in practice at Spa-Francorchamps, Spa, Belgium. Friday 22 August 2014. (Photo: Sam Bloxham/GP3 Series Media Service.)
Dino Zamparelli (GBR, ART Grand Prix) in practice at Spa-Francorchamps, Spa, Belgium. Friday 22 August 2014. (Photo: Sam Bloxham/GP3 Series Media Service.)
Dino Zamparelli (GBR, ART Grand Prix) in practice at Spa-Francorchamps, Spa, Belgium. Friday 22 August 2014. (Photo: Sam Bloxham/GP3 Series Media Service.)
Dino Zamparelli (GBR, ART Grand Prix) during practice at Spa-Francorchamps, Spa, Belgium. Friday 22 August 2014. (Photo: Jed Leicester/GP3 Series Media Service.)
Stoffel Vandoorne (BEL, ART Grand Prix) celebrates winning pole after qualifying at Spa-Francorchamps, Spa, Belgium. Friday 22 August 2014. (Photo: Sam Bloxham/GP2 Series Media Service.)
Stoffel Vandoorne (BEL, ART Grand Prix) at Spa Francorchamps on Friday 22 August 2014. (Photo: Jed Leicester/GP2 Series Media Service.)
Stoffel Vandoorne (BEL, ART Grand Prix) at Spa Francorchamps on Friday 22 August 2014. (Photo: Jed Leicester/GP2 Series Media Service.)
Stoffel Vandoorne (BEL, ART Grand Prix) at Spa Francorchamps on Friday 22 August 2014. (Photo: Sam Bloxham/GP2 Series Media Service.)
Stoffel Vandoorne (BEL, ART Grand Prix) at Spa Francorchamps on Friday 22 August 2014. (Photo: Sam Bloxham/GP2 Series Media Service.)
Stoffel Vandoorne (BEL, ART Grand Prix) celebrates winning pole after Friday qualifying at Spa Francorchamps on August 22 2014. (Photo: Sam Bloxham/GP2 Series Media Service.)
Carlin`s Julian Leal at Spa in Friday practice. August 22, 2014. (Photo Credit: GP2 Media Service)
Adrian Quaife-Hobbs (GBR, Rapax) at the Hungaroring, Budapest, Hungary. Friday 25 July 2014. (Photo: Sam Bloxham/GP2 Series Media Service.)
Stoffel Vandoorne (BEL, ART Grand Prix) celebrates at Hungaroring, Budapest, Hungary. Sunday 27 July 2014. (Photo: Sam Bloxham/GP2 Series Media Service.)
Stoffel Vandoorne (BEL, ART Grand Prix) celebrates at Hungaroring, Budapest, Hungary. Sunday 27 July 2014. (Photo: Sam Bloxham/GP2 Series Media Service.)
Stoffel Vandoorne (BEL, ART Grand Prix), Jolyon Palmer (GBR, DAMS) & Felipe Nasr (BRA, Carlin) elebrate at Hungaroring, Budapest, Hungary. Sunday 27 July 2014. (Photo: Sam Bloxham/GP2 Series Media Service.)
Stoffel Vandoorne (BEL, ART Grand Prix), Jolyon Palmer (GBR, DAMS) & Felipe Nasr (BRA, Carlin) celebrate at the Hungaroring, Budapest, Hungary. Sunday 27 July 2014. (Photo: Sam Bloxham/GP2 Series Media Service.)

Start the conversation - Add your comment

Please login or register before adding your comments.

Although the administrators and moderators of this website will attempt to keep all objectionable comments off these pages, it is impossible for us to review all messages. All messages express the views of the poster, and neither Crash Media Group nor Crash.Net will be held responsible for the content of any message. We do not vouch for or warrant the accuracy, completeness or usefulness of any message, and are not responsible for the contents of any message. If you find a message objectionable, please contact us and inform us of the problem or use the [report] function next to the offending post. Any message that does not conform with the policy of this service can be edited or removed with immediate effect.




© 1999 - 2014 Crash Media Group

The total or partial reproduction of text, photographs or illustrations is not permitted in any form.