Alex Wurz once again showed what a difference experience can make in a race such as the European Grand Prix by claiming an impressive fourth place finish at the Nurburgring.

Similar to his third place finish in an equally chaotic Canadian Grand Prix, Wurz did not put a wheel wrong as others made errors around him to finish just 0.2secs off the podium having started down in 12th position.

Tackling the terrible conditions early on well, Wurz was into the points by the end of the first lap as the majority of the field dived into the pit lane for wet weather tyres and although he lost out through the stops as the rain caused the race to be halted, the Austrian remained well placed in eighth.

The crucial moment however came when Wurz pitted to change back to slick tyres a lap earlier than the majority of the field, a move that was inspired enough to launch him up the order into fifth position. Although he would slip back behind Heikki Kovalainan soon after, the Finn's early pit stop and Kimi Raikkonen's retirement would eventually lift him into fourth.

Spending the final stages of the race slowly closing the gap to Mark Webber in front, Wurz maintained his momentum as the rain began to fall again, the pressure doing enough to force Webber into a mistake at the chicane on the very last lap. Nonetheless, the Australian kept in front to hold the Williams at bay by a mere 0.2secs to deny him a second podium finish of the year.

Another stellar result that again goes a long way to make up for the criticism Wurz has been receiving in comparison to his younger team-mate Nico Rosberg, the former McLaren test driver was not disheartened to just miss out on the top three.

"I could almost taste the champagne today! I am very happy with fourth position and a lot of points. It was a very tough race, I had to use all my brain power and push at the right times. The hardest thing out there today was keeping my head calm because in such a situation it is so easy to get carried away. I had to concentrate and bring the car home.

"My car was good today. In the last few laps I put a lot of pressure on Mark Webber because I saw he was sliding a bit and I was hoping he would make a mistake. He did make a small one, right at the end, but it was not enough to launch an attack and, of course, my main target was to bring points home for the team. One could say finishing just 0.2 seconds behind a podium position is frustrating, but I'm happy with fourth."

Moving him up to ninth in the standings and helping Williams reinforce their fifth position in the constructors' points, technical director Sam Michael praised Wurz's ability to keep calm in difficult surroundings.

"A great result for Alex again. It clearly shows that under difficult conditions, similar to those in Montreal, he can keep his head and make the right choices. He also almost got a podium today but it just wasn't to be. It was a fantastic effort and good for the team as it consolidates our position in the Championship."

 

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