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Grosjean celebrates smart sprint success

On lap 15 he breezed past van der Garde into the Beckett Esses, and then a couple of turns later Clos was struggling with grip so severely that he locked up his brakes into Brooklands and went off the track momentarily. Although he rejoined the track still in the lead, his momentum was broken and his confidence shaken, and next time around Grosjean was able to get the better exit onto the old start/finish straight, pull alongside and then take the lead into Copse.

Once in the lead, Grosjean was able to cruise away to the chequered flag, finally winning by an impressive 7s margin - an average gap of over a second per lap from the point where he took over the lead from Clos. Clos and van der Garde did well to hold on to their respective second and third positions to join the Frenchman on the podium at the end of the race.

Racing Engineering's Vietoris was sharing his team mate Dani Clos' declining performance and he was forced to hand back that hard-won fifth place to Marcus Ericsson on lap 15. A lap later he lost another place on the run down to Copse, this time to Jules Bianchi who was finally coming alive having followed Grosjean's tactic of biding his time to look after this tyres in the first stages of the race.

Ericsson's tyres lasted just long enough to see him claim fourth place from his team mate Sam Bird, but he locked up his tyres badly in doing do and tore up the rubber even more than it had been before. Thereafter both iSport cars were struggling and locking up pretty constantly, badly enough for Bird to lose fifth position to Bianchi on the penultimate lap, but Ericsson still had enough grip left to see him hold on to fourth place by the finish and even join van der Garde in chasing Clos to the chequered flag.

At the back of the field, Coletti and Varhaug both managed to rejoin the race albeit a lap down; Coletti even used the clear air in which he found himself to set the fastest lap of the race, although he was too far down the positions to be eligible for the bonus point and it duly went to Grosjean instead. Johnny Cecotto Jr. pulled over to the side of the track and retired at turn 1 on lap 10 with apparent mechanical problems, while the only other retirement of the afternoon was Kevin Ceccon who exited the race on lap 6.

Julian Leal had a torrid time of things, handed a jump start penalty early on that required him to come into the pits for a ten-second stop-go penalty (as opposed to the normal drive-thru, because the configuration of the new pit lane at Silverstone meant that drivers could come through pit lane with almost no loss of time despite the speed limit in force.) Unfortunately for Leal he was then found to have speeded in pit lane while serving his penalty, and was forced to come in again and repeat the entire ignominious process a second time.

But no such problems for Romain Grosjean, who - after a rather mixed weekend at Valencia and having to come into Silverstone with a ten place grid penalty to serve hanging over him - had put in a solid and consistent performance to rise above the problems and have one of his best weekends of the season with regards to the GP2 championship battle.

Grosjean denied that it was as easy a win as it had looked from the outside. "It really wasn't!" he laughed. "I was just waiting, saving my tyres for a long as I could, and then at the end of the race I saw that my pace was very good – the team did a great job – and I could put 2 nice moves in to get the lead, and then I went on for the victory.

"So it's a very good weekend," he agreed. "[Especially] looking at the ten place penalty we had on the grid, which was not the best way to start the meetings, but in the end we got more points than the others so that's the main thing."

Clos seemed happy enough with second place in the circumstances. "With just 7 laps I did a mistake where I locked up the tyres, the front left, and then the rhythm was not the same, Romain had a really good car and he drove well, so he won, I was second, and it's okay."




Related Pictures

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Romain Grosjean (FRA, Dams) in the cockpit of the Dams GP2 car at Silverstone - July 2011. [Photo credit: Drew Gibson/GP2 Media Service.]
Romain Grosjean (FRA, Dams) leads Sam Bird (GBR, iSport International) in the GP2 sprint race at Silverstone. July 2011. [Photo credit: Jacob Ebery/GP2 Media Service.]
Romain Grosjean (FRA, Dams) celebrates his victory in the GP2 sprint race at Silverstone on the podium. July 2011. [Photo credit: Jacob Ebery/GP2 Media Service.]
Giedo Van der Garde (NED, Barwa Addax Team) leads the field into turn one on the opening lap of the GP2 sprint race at Silverstone. July 2011. [Photo credit: Jacob Ebery/GP2 Media Service.]
Romain Grosjean (FRA, Dams) crosses the line to take victory in the GP2 sprint race at Silverstone. July 2011. [Photo credit: Alastair Staley/GP2 Media Service.]
Romain Grosjean (FRA, Dams) celebrates his victory in the GP2 sprint race at Silverstone on the podium. [Photo credit: Alastair Staley/GP2 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.)
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: 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.)
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.)

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