A1 Grand Prix Team Germany left the Dubai Autodrome without adding to their points tally on Sunday despite driver Adrian Sutil starting the first race of the day from the third row.

Returning driver Sutil, who missed the previous race in Malaysia after breaking a thumb at Eastern Creek, qualified a sterling sixth for the 15-lap sprint race. However his challenge lasted as far as the first corner before a brush with Team Malaysia's Alex Yoong left Sutil sitting on the sidelines with damaged suspension.

Faced with a 22nd place starting position for the 30-lap feature race, Sutil's bid to gain places wasn't helped by a drive through penalty for jumping the start and then a mix up with his crew that resulted in him pitting for his mandatory tyre change one lap early.

The ground lost by no less than three separate pit visits meant point scoring was impossible, but Sutil battled on to 12th place in the feature event, failing to improve on Germany's 15th place in the overall standings but showing an impressive turn of speed on a weekend where the Willi Weber led team made some serious improvements to the overall set-up of the car.

"The progress we made with the car's set-up this weekend was very positive, both races were unfortunately disappointing," said Sutil. "In the sprint race I was forced into another car by a competitor. We couldn't continue and had to change a damaged wishbone. In the feature race I rolled forward too early and received a penalty. Afterwards I pitted a lap early because of a misunderstanding and had to stop a third time for the new tyres."

"The unfortunate events in the first race and the mistakes in the second race cost us dearly today," added Weber. "We saw in every practice session and the warm-up that there was a lot more potential."

Team Germany will be hoping that the changes they made in Dubai will still be there after the Christmas break, for after a solid opening two rounds, Germany has scored just once in the last eight races.

 

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