Ireland finally got their points tally off zero at a sodden Sepang after Michael Devaney fought his way up to tenth place in the latter stages of the feature race, round eight of the A1 Grand Prix Championship.

A combination of bad luck and problems with their Lola chassis had so far left Ireland without a point to their name going into the Malaysian race and confidence was no higher when the team could only manage 13th on the grid.

Indeed, the sprint race proved to be something of a struggle for Ireland, after dropping back a place to 14th by the chequered flag to further limit their chances of a strong result in the feature race.

Nonetheless, having proved off the pace in the dry, the heavy rain that fell ahead of the feature race proved something of a leveller for Devaney, who battled hard in the early stages of the race, moving onto the cusp of the top ten between South Africa and Singapore.

Moving ahead of the struggling South Africa and Malaysia, but behind Singapore after the pit stops, Devaney stabilised in tenth for a brief moment, only to be overhauled by the rejuvenated Alex Yoong with only a handful of laps to go, leaving Ireland in the desperate position of eleventh place.

Nonetheless, Devaney fought back in the closing laps to find a way past Singapore's Christian Murchison to snatch away the tenth and final point to get the team off the mark.

"For the first 10 laps of the Feature Race I just couldn't see anything in the conditions and had to back off half way down the straights. I really had to concentrate hard not to lose the car anywhere. I managed to get Singapore just before the end so I am happy to have got our first point after a hard race."

Although team principal Mark Gallagher admits he wasn't expecting to score a point, he is now hoping the point will spur them on to an improved run of form over the coming races

"The conditions were awful today and Michael did well to avoid trouble, overtake some tough competitors and bring the team its first championship point. We never thought it would take four race weekends to bring our first point of the season, but hopefully it marks the start of a return to more competitive form."

 

Comments

Loading Comments...