Round 3, Bahrain
After last week's exceptional grand slam, DAMS and its lead driver, Davide Valsecchi, continued where they'd left off on the same Sakhir circuit with another victory and a podium. Felipe Nasr enhanced his growing reputation with another brilliant comeback from 11th to 5th place in race 2.
The Italian driver in the DAMS team was again very quick in qualifying setting the second-best time. But in the race itself he soon put things to rights. Thanks to an impeccable pit stop and excellent tyre management he headed off to his third win on the trot in Bahrain (a first in the history of GP2) with a lead of over 8 seconds at the finish. Davide started the sprint race from eighth place and was again the quickest driver on the track. However, a few complicated passing manoeuvres meant that he had to make do with third.
Felipe Nasr also repeated his previous weekend's performance. The Brazilian rookie was heavily penalised after a superb drive in the first race, and he again showed all his talent and determination in the sprint race crossing the finishing line in 5th place stuck to Gutierrez's gearbox.
So overall, the second Bahrain round was a very positive one for the French team. Despite very tough competition, DAMS has increased its lead (42 points) in the teams' classification, and Davide Valsecchi now has 24 points in hand over second-placed Luiz Razzia in the drivers' ratings in which Felipe Nasr is currently lying eighth.
Jean-Paul Driot, CEO: "I feel like I'm repeating myself and I hope I'll have many more occasions to say a big thank you to the whole team. It has managed to hold on to its lead in style against very strong rivals. Three victories and a podium for Davide need no comment. Felipe showed his blinding speed, and also his strength of character in adversity. But we're only a quarter way through the championship; we've still got a long way to go so we can't afford to lower our guard for an instant."
Davide Valsecchi: "I'm really delighted and it's been another great weekend for us. I'd like to thank the team for giving me a perfect car in which I scored a win and podium finish. We did an excellent job and we have to keep up the same momentum to stay on top at the next round in Barcelona. I can't wait to be there!"
Felipe Nasr: "Once again circumstances didn't play into my hands. But what I'll take away from this round is that I was able to show all my potential in the second race. I know the best is yet to come. The season's very long and with the team and the car that I've got I'm sure that I can fight at the front. Rendezvous in Spain."
Next round: Barcelona 12-13 May.
Race 1 results:
Pos Driver Team Time/Gap
1. Davide Valsecchi DAMS 57m35.088s
2. Fabio Leimer Racing Engineering + 7.711s
3. Giedo van der Garde Caterham + 14.824s
4. Luiz Razia Arden + 24.142s
5. Max Chilton Carlin + 24.705s
6. Rio Haryanto Carlin + 40.965s
7. Felipe Nasr DAMS + 45.772s
8. Marcus Ericsson iSport + 50.645s
9. Tom Dillmann Rapax + 52.522s
10. Johnny Cecotto Addax + 55.578s
11. Esteban Gutierrez Lotus + 56.211s
12. Nathanael Berthon Racing Engineering + 1m06.906s
13. Brendon Hartley Ocean + 1m07.254s
14. Rodolfo Gonzalez Caterham + 1m09.206s
15. Simon Trummer Arden + 1m15.486s
16. Julian Leal Trident + 1m16.363s
17. James Calado Lotus + 1m20.506s
18. Stephane Richelmi Trident + 1m21.441s
19. Nigel Melker Ocean + 1m29.955s
20. Fabio Onidi Coloni + 1m47.146s
21. Stefano Coletti Coloni + 1 lap
22. Giancarlo Serenelli Lazarus + 1 lap
23. Ricardo Teixeira Rapax + 1 lap
Jolyon Palmer iSport 30 laps
Fabrizio Crestani Lazarus 24 laps
Dani Clos Addax 8 laps
Race 2 results:
Pos Driver Team Time/Gap
1. Tom Dillmann Rapax 41m16.276s
2. Luiz Razia Arden + 0.198s
3. Davide Valsecchi DAMS + 3.958s
4. Esteban Gutierrez Lotus + 16.488s
5. Felipe Nasr DAMS + 18.602s
6. Rio Haryanto Carlin + 20.425s
7. Marcus Ericsson iSport + 26.294s
8. Fabio Leimer Racing Engineering + 29.605s
9. Fabio Onidi Coloni + 33.490s
10. Nathanael Berthon Racing Engineering + 34.078s
11. Nigel Melker Ocean + 43.463s
12. James Calado Lotus + 44.371s
13. Max Chilton Carlin + 46.743s
14. Julian Leal Trident + 47.439s
15. Rodolfo Gonzalez Caterham + 54.991s
16. Brendon Hartley Ocean + 59.764s
17. Stephane Richelmi Trident + 1m00.655s
18. Stefano Coletti Coloni + 1m02.090s
19. Giedo van der Garde Caterham + 1m02.632s
20. Ricardo Teixeira Rapax + 1m07.468s
21. Giancarlo Serenelli Lazarus + 1m08.293s
22. Jolyon Palmer iSport + 1m18.688s
23. Fabrizio Crestani Lazarus + 1m26.049s
Simon Trummer Arden 21 laps
Dani Clos Addax 19 laps
Johnny Cecotto Addax 0 laps