This weekend in Shanghai in China DAMS is beginning its 2008-09 campaign in the Asian GP2 Series Championship. It is a new challenge for the French team, which shone on several occasions in last winter’s title fight. It is taking it up with the same 2 drivers who defended its colours throughout the year in GP2 Asia as well as in GP2 Europe: Kamui Kobayashi and Jérôme d’Ambrosio.
This season the Asian GP2 Championship field will be made up of 26 cars and will run from October to April. The calendar is as follows:
200817th-19th October: China, Shanghai 5th-7th December: United Arab Emirates, Dubai200923rd-25th January: Bahrain, Sakhir27th February – 1st March: United Arab Emirates, Dubai 3rd- 4th April: Malaysia, Sepang17th-19th April: Bahrain, Sakhir
With only 24 hours to go to the opening practice session the men setting pace are Jérôme d’Ambrosio and Kamui Kobayashi. The Belgian closed his European GP2 Series Championship on a high note with 6 consecutive points finishes, and set the fourth-quickest time in private testing on the Shanghai circuit last week. The Japanese driver was fastest overall in the same test.
Eric Boullier, team manager: “The GP2 Series ended barely a month ago and now we’re in China ready to do battle in the new Asian GP2 Championship. The car is well prepared after what’s been a logistics marathon. We’ve got big ambitions from a sporting point of view as we had a very competitive season in 2007-08. We reckon we’ve all the cards stacked in our favour to fight at the front with a car we know by heart and the same drivers as last year.”
Kamui Kobayashi: “Last week’s test was very positive and we have to confirm our excellent form with rostrum finishes. The first round of the Asian GP2 Series is taking place in front of the F1 world. My aim is to win the race and begin the championship on a high note.”
Jéröme d’Ambrosio: “I’ll be back in the old GP2 single-seater this weekend, in which I feel at home. After driving it in last year’s GP2 Asian Series I’ve found my marks very quickly. My collaboration with the team is now very efficient. We’ll be on the pace right from the word go and our aim will be to make a big impact at the first meeting.”