AFTER BEING LEADERS IN FREE PRACTICE, BARWA ADDAX TEAM UNABLE TO CONSOLIDATE WITH RESULTS.GOOD PERFORMANCES BY CECOTTO AT LEAST WHILE HIS CAR WERE IN CONDITION. BRAKE PROBLEMS FOR KRÁL.
After having set the quickest lap time in free practice through Josef Král, and good performances from Johnny Cecotto, it seemed as if Barwa Addax Team were going to get good results, now the team were back on European territory in Montmeló, Barcelona. Unfortunately things started to go wrong and the Spanish team have finished the fourth event of the season without having been able to show what they are really capable of.
Johnny Cecotto, set the thirteenth fastest time in the free practice session, having done very few laps to save on tyres. He just couldn’t find the right moment to set a fastest lap time in the qualifications and finished in a lowly 15th position. In the first race he had great first half and was producing the most spectacular moments and was without the driver who was attacking most. He had to pay the price at the end of the race because his tyres were completely destroyed, which meant he was unable to defend his position. A similar situation happened to him in the second race, too. Starting from 18th on the starting grid he climbed through the field to 10th, after having shown his quality, agressiveness and the risk factor involved, but all this ended up in nothing as he paid for his efforts and finished with lost engine power and totally unable to defend his position in the last 5 laps.
Josef Kral, had a wonderful start to the weekend in Barcelona, after having finished leader after the free practice session on his return to the Barwa Addax Team. Having been the quickest in free practice he and the team decided on a one lap strategy in the qualifications which turned out to be the wrong one due to optimum performance of the soft tyres in this class. After starting in the main pelotón of drivers, he was able to make a good enough start to hold on to his position. However, after the first lap things started to change because he was suffering from brake failure which meant he had no control left. He had to brake early at very turn and he was unable to compete with the rest. He finished with terrible cramps in his legs caused by braking. In the second race he started from a lowly 20th position and he was able to climb up to 16th at the end of the race despite the difficulty involved in overtaking on this circuit from so far back.
Johnny Cecotto, official Barwa Addax Team driver:”Another difficult weekend. Very difficult qualifying with the soft compound. Race 1 was compromised by having changed only two tyres and by the slow pit stop. Race 2 after gaining a lot of places lost engine power in the last 10 laps which compromised a points finish”.
Josef Král, official Barwa Addax Team driver:” The weekend started much better than I expected because I missed two races in Bahrain so I was expecting that it will be tought for me to get quickly on the pace but I won free practice with first flying lap I did on the track and I found the car very good! In qualifying, we started to struggle with breaks so I could improve my breaking points on new soft tires and ended up on P16.Over night guys tried to find out what is wrong with the breaks, checked everything cleaned them. But as the race started I felt that it will be even worse because the car is full of fuel so the problem which was still there become even bigger. It allowed me to finish the race only on P20. So we change all the breaks for second race to make sure that it will be fine. It was but I had problems with gearbox when I was downshifting so it was very difficult to stop the car before corners. I couldn't overtake so P16 was maximum. I hope that Monaco will be the breaking event for us to start scoring propper points”.
Mónaco is the next great event in this season’s GP2 main series between the 25th and 26th of May. Barwa Addax Team is sure that their fortunes will change at the historic monegascan circuit.