Neel Jani gave Switzerland a rostrum finish and the best overall result in the team's history in the opening A1GP encounter of the 2007/08 campaign at Zandvoort, despite never having so much as seen the circuit before.

What's more, with no action on Friday due to noise restrictions and only wet practice and qualifying running, Jani's performance to put the Swiss entry fourth on the grid for both the sprint and feature outings was impressive indeed. On a dry track for the first time on the Sunday, the Champ Car ace and former Formula 1 test-driver converted that starting position to a close fifth-placed finish in the sprint, before going better still and sealing a podium result in the longer feature race.

"It was already a good sign in the sprint race," the 23-year-old commented, "with fifth place and six points to open our scoring account for the season.

"Overall it was a successful weekend. Too bad I never had time to practice on this track to learn the lines, but I am very happy with the third place for the feature race and all the points from the sprint.

"It was an interesting afternoon after a strong start. I was not struggling any longer with the lines, and the race was long enough for good fights. I had a really good start and passed A1 Team GB, then battled my way to finish in third."

Switzerand now sits fifth in the nations' standings, a mere three points adrift of feature race winner Great Britain in second.

"The best race weekend our team's history," added delighted team principal Max Welti, "and an excellent result to start the season. It is important to collect not only six points but also a podium for our first weekend of our third season. This is positive for our third year's operation. The whole team was very focused around a good race and no details were left to chance."

 

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