Light and dark at Singapore Grand Prix
- Sep 26, 2011
It was a case of light and dark for Marussia Virgin Racing at the Singapore Grand Prix. The F1 circuit's only night race saw Jérôme D’Ambrosio finish strongly but Timo Glock not complete the Singapore Street Circuit.
Richard Branson was on hand to watch Marussia Virgin Racing in action too. Here's what the team thought about the Singapore Grand Prix...
Jérôme D’Ambrosio delivered a strong drive in this evening’s night race to take the chequered flag in 18th place for his Marussia Virgin Racing team. Timo Glock was forced to retire after 18 laps following damage to the car sustained when he was struck in turn 1 which rendered his car undriveable.
It was a surprisingly clean opening lap to the 14th race of the season with both Timo and Jérôme getting off to a good start. At the first corner Ricciardo drove into the right rear of Timo’s car and it wasn’t long before he radioed in with handling problems with his MVR-02. He persevered with his race but his car was a handful and when he braked for turn 18, he lost the rear and hit the wall.
Jérôme stayed out of trouble and after his first pit-stop he was running in 20th position. On lap 29 the Safety Car came out after Schumacher hit the wall. Jérôme took advantage of the situation and pitted for a second and final time to put a set of new Pirelli P-Zero Soft tyres on. At the restart he was in 19th position and one lap ahead of Trulli’s Lotus. He drove consistently well to the end and brought the car back home through the streets of a fully lit Singapore Street Circuit.
Jérôme D’Ambrosio said: "I’m quite happy with my race today. I had a good start and pushed hard on the first two laps and then tried to save the tyres as we were following a two-stop strategy – that was pretty good. The last stint was long and not easy to manage.
"I could push, but I had to have in mind that I had to look after the tyres until the end of the race. It has been quite a good race. I’m satisfied and we need to continue like this. It’s certainly the toughest race I have done, but I managed to go to the end without many problems, so it was good."
Timo Glock commented: "It’s a disappointing end to the weekend for the team and for me. I had quite a good start but I lost my positioning with Jérôme because I was on the outside. Then, unfortunately, in the second sector Ricciardo drove into the rear right of the car and from that moment my steering wheel was not straight, it was quite a lot to the right, and in all the left-hand corners the car was really difficult to drive.
"I had a lot of degradation on the rear right tyre and then suddenly I lost the rear under braking and when I hit the wall I think it broke the rear suspension and that was it. It’s a real shame for the team that has been working hard all over the weekend, but this is racing and now we just have to look forward to the next race in Japan."
John Booth, Team Principal, added: "Jérôme drove possibly his best race of the year today. We were really pleased to see him battling with cars that are usually several seconds in front of us on pace. Enabling him to do this was a well thought-out strategy by the engineers which was executed faultlessly by the pit crew, with last minute calls and Safety Cars thrown in the mix. I’m sure he’ll take a big lift from this race and look forward to the final races of the season.
"Unfortunately, Timo’s race was over on the first lap with the impact from Ricciardo. It’s a great shame we didn’t get the chance to see him in action at his favourite track. It’s certainly been a very hot and humid weekend for all of the guys in the garage, however they have done a fantastic job to keep to our normal high standards of operation."
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