Nicholas Lapierre circulated the 3.93 km Eastern Creek Raceway in Australia in faster than anyone else and in front of everyone else in the Sprint race of the A1 Grand Prix to take victory by over eight seconds.

Lapierre, who maintains his 100% record for France in the A1 Grand Prix, took the rolling start and then the ensuing safety car restarts with aplomb to drive unchallenged to his victory, whilst behind him Alvaro Parente for Team Portugal held off his British F3 predecessor champion Nelson Piquet for Team Brazil for the other two podium spots.

The safety car was out twice. In the first incident New Zealand, South Africa and the Czech Republic were all fighting for the same piece of track, and Tomas Enge in the Czech car round himself in the gravel, whilst the other two cars were able to continue.

No sooner was the safety car back into the pits than it was required again as Salvador Duran for Team Mexico harrassed Team Italy with Enrico Toccacelo, getting alongside in Turn One, and past the Italian car in Turn Two, but then was taken by an over ambitious Adrian Sutil in the Team Germany car from behind, the German locking up over the gravel on the inside of the turn to collect Duran into the gravel. Toccacelo meanwhile had wisely avoided the incident.

Save for the incidents, overtaking proved to be difficult, illustrated at the front of the field with Piquet's difficulties in trying to get past Parente.

Just a short break until the Feature race with cars suffering damage including Japan, Austria, Lebabon, South Africa, Mexico and Germany.

Top ten
1. France
2. Portugal
3. Brazil
4. Ireland
5. Great Britain
6. Switzerland
7. Netherlands
8. Malaysia
9. Canada
10. Italy

 

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