7 February 2010
Asia: Valsecchi spoils DPR party
Davide Valsecchi spoiled David Price Racing's party after catching and passing both Michael Herck and Giacomo Ricci in the closing stages of the Abu Dhabi sprint race.
Davide Valsecchi has extended his lead at the top of the GP2 Asia standings after claiming his second win of the season at the expense of an inspired Michael Herck.
The Italian finished second behind iSport team-mate Oliver Turvey during the feature race but worked his way up from a starting position of seventh to launch a late charge against DPR duo Herck and Giacomo Ricci and snatch the win.
Herck, who scored his first GP2 points in more than two years of trying during the feature race, started alongside pole man Max Chilton, but assumed the lead with the Briton bogged down.
With the safety car deployed to clear the wreckage of Josef Kral's stricken Super Nova car, the Czech driver having been caught up in a collision with Sergio Perez and Luca Filippi, Herck led Alexander Rossi and Ricci.
Once racing was underway, Ricci fought his way past Rossi to make it a provisional DPR 1-2, the pair even making a break for it to raise hopes of a first GP2 win for the team in five years.
Further back, however, Valsecchi was steadily working his way up the order and was up to third position at the expense of Rossi on lap eleven. With ten laps remaining, Valsecchi reeled off a series of fast laps to hunt down Ricci and Herck, the iSport driver getting the better of his countryman on lap 14 with a stylish move.
Turning his attentions to Herck, Valsecchi got a better run on his rival down the back straight with three laps to go, assuming the lead of the race and holding on to the chequered flag.
With two wins and two second place finishes in the four races so far, Valsecchi has put air between himself and the competition in the overall standings, extending his advantage to 19 points over feature race winner and team-mate Turvey, who could only manage fifth from eighth on the grid.
Despite missing out on a popular result, Herck was thrilled with second place, while Ricci held on for third to complete DPR's strongest outing in some years.
Barwa Addax's Perez made impressive gains to fourth place having started down in 12th, ahead of Turvey, while Chilton clung onto sixth place having never quite recovered from his disappointing start.
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