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Date: 2018-10-07 18:36:41
League: World Championship
Track: Round 12: Autodromo Jose Carlos Pace
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The perfect weekend! Christian & Gabriel take 1-2 in Ace, as Faisal wins in Pro!!
Faster Than Speed WS Turkish GP Report
Team: Faster Than Speed Ace
After the frustrating weekend at Hungary,
"FTS 1-2 at Istanbul!! (WS Ace)" the FSR World Series races at Turkey, were full of success for Faster Than Speed.
Faisal Niazi started the great weekend by winning the Pro division race at Istanbul, while on Sunday, Christian Smirnoff and Gabriel Garivaldis took their FTS-P6 for a 1-2 finish. These were the first two victories of the season for the team, and the 1-2 was the first one of the season for the Ace division, no other team yet achieved this during 2006.
In the World Series Ace division, Gabriel and Christian were 3rd and 8th in Q1, while in Q2, Christian took 4th position in the grid, ahead of all championship rivals, while Gabriel could only take 8th, affected by a spin. Theo Gort made his comeback, but could only manage 16th position in Qualifying after struggling with little testing time over the new car.
In the race, things started in the opposite direction for Christian. The FTS-P6 started moving before the lights went off, even though this allowed him to temporarly take the lead, Christian had to take a drive-through penalty for jumping the start at the end of the first lap, rejoining in 11th position. From there, Christian started an agressive recovery, displaying by far his most impressive performance of the season. While Gabriel took the lead of the race with very good pace after the retirement of Ondrej Kuncman, Christian managed to climb from 11th to 2nd after the final round of pitstops. In the last lap, team mates switched positions, to maximize the chances for the Drivers Championship, a gesture that Christian was visibly thankful for after jumping out of the car. Theo Gort retired from the race.
It was Faster Than Speed's 2nd 1-2 finish in the Ace category, after the one achieved last season by Christian Smirnoff and Wolfgang Weber.
Christian Smirnoff (1st): "1-2 finish for FTS! Unbeleivable!! In Q1, just in, and in front of Ferry. In Q2, I could drive a better lap and took 4th, in front of Mark, Fred and Laszlo, which was something I honestly didn't expect.
When the race started, for some reason, I jumped the start. I don't know what happened, but it's a mistake that shouldn't happen with my experience. I obviously took the lead in the first lap, and entered the pits for my drive through penalty. I exited in 11th place, so I knew I had a difficult race ahead. But I also inmediately saw I had good pace as I could inmediately start attacking the cars in front, lost some time behind slower cars, although some helped me by making mistakes. It was a race of pushing really really hard. After the first real pitstop I was back to 10th and after the second one, already up in 5th. The one I couldn't overtake was John Kladis as we had similar pace, so I had to push very hard to be in front of him and of Darius Trinka after my last stop. Leaded for a lap before my last stop, and when I exited from it, I was in 2nd, which I was very happy about. From there, I tuned down my engine boost and raced safe to the end.
The car was just perfect. I went faster than most guys that were usually faster than me, so it was really great and I had a lot of fun. I really hope to keep this performance level for the rest of the season!
In the last lap, my team mate Gab let me through because of the Championship, something I don't have enough words to thank him for. Today I had the pace to win on own merit though, as I lost over 20 seconds with the drive through and behind slower cars, and was just 13 seconds behind him after my last stop. I really hope I can give him this back some day!
It was just a perfect weekend, like in Canada last year. The result was great for both Championships,
"FTS logo" but there are still 4 races to go, so we need to keep pushing hard!"
Gabriel Garivaldis (2nd): "Yeah what a race! Brilliant! I had a great start, went from 8th to 4th right away. Then soon after I was in 2nd place, then after the 1st pitstop I took the lead. Held the lead for most of the race, from then on and finally moved over for Christian to take the win.
I admit that I did really want to win... Still to this day I am yet to win a race at FSR so the wait continues, but I know that Christian is going for the championship and if he was in my position he would do the same for me. You know, he's a great teammate, great friend, he deserves it.
Our strategy was perfect, our setup was similar and pretty good, so we were both quite similar in pace, Christian and I. In the end we were the only guys with 'leader-pace' not to make any mistakes or have bad luck. Great result for the championship, Drivers' and Team. I'm really happy about this, now we go to the next round with much more confidence. Go FTS!"
With this result, the team took the lead of the Constructors Championship from Roaldo Racing, and now leads by 17 points, after scoring the maximum possible, 46 points. In the Drivers Championship, Christian Smirnoff took the lead from Ferry Koek, and now leads the Twister Racing driver by 22 points, with 4 races left this season.
In World Series Pro, Faisal Niazi took his first win for FTS, after a very solid drive. Faisal, the only FTS to take part in the race, was 2nd fastest in Q1, and later took 3rd on the grid on Q2.
In the race, Faisal quickly took the lead, to be attacked inmediately by Ben Philips. Philips spun off the track and had to retire from the race, leaving Faisal now followed by Nazario Nuti. The Italian took the lead from Faisal, but had a 2 stopper strategy to Faisal's 1, meaning that the lead was recovered after Nuti's last pitstop. Faisal took his first victory to the delight of all the team.
Faisal Niazi (1st): "Qualifying wasnâ€™t too disappointing. My eventual grid position time was 6 tenths slower than my PB and would have only been worth one more position on the grid. I felt more comfortable starting on the right hand side of the grid, 3rd, because there was room on the outside of T1 for the start.
Pedro and Nazario collided at the first corner and left a little gap for me to take the lead just in front of Ben who had a charging start. I havenâ€™t led many GPs so the pressure was on, this is even before I had time to consider Ben who was glued to me rear wing looking to get past. After Benâ€™s early exit, I had the recovering Nazario hunting me down. On the last corner I had a little slide which allowed Nazario to get along side me on the start/finish straight beginning lap 12, he misjudged something or maybe it was intentional but to me it looked as if he braked across in front of me at the same time clipping my front wing with his rear wheel. My anger at this manoeuvre soon turned into a smile as he pitted and was obvious he wasnâ€™t one stopping like me. Towards the end of the race I had a 6-8sec lead and I just had to manage the gap.
My thanks goes out to the FTS team for helping me get my first victory."
This result, takes Faisal Niazi to 4th in the standings, just a couple of points away from the other championship contenders.
After this unbeleivable weekend, FTS goes to Monza, hoping for more successful results in the quest for the World Series championships.
Faster Than Speed
Article by: Christian Smirnoff, 2006-09-19 00:48:08