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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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Spain: A weekend of missed opportunities for FTS
Faster Than Speed - Spain Report
Despite some strong finishes, Faster Than
"Faster Than Speed 2007" Speed left Catalunya knowing that more could have been achieved.
In World Series Pro, Faisal Niazi and Darren Fisher were 4th and 10th respectively in Q1, then taking the 8th and 7th spots on the grid after the Q2 session.
Unfortunately, things started to go wrong for the team from the first laps. Faisal was crashed by Alexander Balanesko. Although Faisal managed to continue, his race was over soon afterwards after a hardware failure. Darren wasn't much luckier either, as he collided with a car that had spun in front of him, costing him an extra pitstop for a new front wing. Darren had a strong recovery to finish the race in 6th position.
With Darren's result, the team managed to keep its 2nd place on the Constructors' standings.
In World Series Ace, Gabriel Garivaldis, Christian Smirnoff and Theo Gort set the 11th, 12th and 14th laptimes respectively in the Q1 session, securing those places in the starting grid. Dani Falco unfortunately couldn't participate in his home race due to connection issues.
In the race, Christian took the only FTS points of the race with a 5th place finish in a clean race for him. Christian went into the final lap in 4th position but was unable to defend against a speedy Blair Disley, who made his fourth and last pitstop with three laps to go, setting the fastest lap of the race with brand new tires while hunting Christian down, who had his set completely worn out.
Gabriel suffered his first retirement of the season, as Michael Theis crashed into him and ended the strong race he was driving. Theo unfortunately couldn't reach the checkered flag either, as the pitcrew was unable to repair the damage from a shunt against the barriers following a spin.
Christian Smirnoff (5th): "Qualifying was ok, had splits times during the session that would have been enough for 11th, but Q2 was not possible today.
The race was good, I didn't have any major problems and finally a race without incidents. My biggest problem was the tyres which were overheating and didn't let me run at my real pace, but the car balance was still good. I also probably ran too safe engine settings too, after the failure in Australia which affected the pace a little bit.
In the end, it was a nice battle with Blair Disley for 4th. I realised he was probably in a 4 stopper, while I did 3 stops. He pitted with only 3 laps to go, and came out behind me with brand new tyres and almost no fuel, while my tyres were completely worn out, and he reduced the gap inmediately. Unfortunately, I was blocked by two backmarkers from Torrent, Jimmy Jones before Blair's stop and then Michael Theis just before the last lap and lost a couple of seconds that could have been very important.
I tried very hard to keep him behind but unfortunately he passed me on the last lap into turn 4, after I had to go slightly wide in turn 3 to avoid contact. It's really disappointing to lose a position in the last lap but there's nothing else I could do, the tyre difference was just too big. 5th isn't a bad position though and hopefully I can get a good result
"Another shot of the FTS-P7!" in Monaco. A big shame that Gabriel was taken out as he was doing a good race."
In the World Championship event, Patrick De Wit and Guiseppe Marconi took 5th and 14th positions in Qualifying.
Patrick made a fantastic start, going from 5th to 2nd in the first two corners, later pulling out a courageous overtaking move over Roy Kolbe into the fourth corner to take the lead of the race. Leading 12 race laps, Patrick defended well against the main championship contenders. Looking set for a podium finish, everything went wrong for Patrick in his third pitstop. Due to going over the legal speed in the pitlane, Patrick earned a 10 second stop-and-go penalty. He missunderstood the order and only took a drive-through, having to enter the pitlane again the following lap for the third time in as many laps to take his penalty correctly. Going through the pitlane a total of six times during the race, Patrick recovered from 8th to 5th by overtaking several cars. It wasn't Patrick's day though, as with only a few laps left, he suffered a front left brake failure, leaving him out of the points in 9th position, two laps down.
Guiseppe, also looking set for a point-scoring finishing position, had to retire early due to connection issues, in what ended up being a very disappointing race for Faster Than Speed.
Patrick De Wit (9th): "Fantastic feeling to lead a WC race again. I started 5th and going into Turn 1 I could pass Kuncman and Greco, then somehow Marques went a bit wide and passed him into Turn 2. I then had a go at Kolbe, it was very risky but I decided to go for it and I was then leading the race!
Everything went ok doing my laps holding off Marques and Kolbe, it was wheel to wheel but fair fights. There was even a moment where Roy (Kolbe) had the position going into Turn 1 but I braked extremely late to hold position. I wanted that lead so badly! But then I made a small mistake and was demoted to 2nd.
I was doing fine until my 3rd pitstop. Limiter did not go on and I had a stop-and-go but I did a drive through instead so I still had to do that stop-and-go (the following lap).
I then passed some cars, Schmalenbach, Spengler, and was on my way to 5th
when my brakes failed again. It's pretty frustrating now but I had the speed for 2nd today, Roy was too fast. Congratulations to him!"
Unfortunately, the Court of Appeal decided to disqualify Guiseppe Marconi from the Australia race due to the Formation Lap incident in what was a highly controversial, and in our opinion, completely unfair decision as it goes against what is clearly stated in the WC Rules. Guiseppe unfortunately loses the 2 points scored for his 7th place finish.
Stay tuned for the results of next race, in the glamorous streets of Monte Carlo, Monaco, a circuit where Christian Smirnoff and Gabriel Garivaldis took a double podium, finishing 2nd and 3rd last year.
Faster Than Speed
Article by: Christian Smirnoff, 2007-05-19 01:20:54