A1 TEAM INDONESIA BUMPS A1 TEAM AUSTRALIA OUT OF MONTERREY RACE

A1 TEAM INDONESIA BUMPS A1 TEAM AUSTRALIA OUT OF MONTERREY RACE

27.02.2006: A1 TEAM INDONESIA BUMPS A1 TEAM AUSTRALIA OUT OF MONTERREY RACE


A1 Grand Prix of Nations, Parque Fundidora Monterrey, Mexico

MONTERREY, MEXICO 27 February 2006 – Early this morning (Australian time) Team Australia were bumped out of the feature race in the ninth round of the A1 Grand Prix of Nations in Mexico.

On lap 22 between the first and second corners of the Parque Fundidora track, Team Indonesia having lost control and after re-entering the track - clipped the back wheel of the Australian car. Spinning the green and gold off the track and ending any hope Team Australia had of improving on the third place achieved in the last round of the series in Indonesia a fortnight ago.

The Monterrey race marked the second time in the World Cup of Motor Racing Series Christian Jones was behind the wheel for the Aussies in the feature race. Team Australia’s policy has been to give the racing to the driver who achieves the best results in practice. Christian said: "It has been a long time since I have raced the car, so was great to have a bit more time at the wheel and work with the team to get the car up to speed for race day."

The Australians had been struggling with the car all weekend. In practice on the first day, they were having problems with the differential which affected the car’s traction on a wet surface caused by a day of downpours.

"Even after the differential was repaired the car’s overall set up meant it was still running more slowly than we would have liked during the qualifying session, which had us starting at the back of the grid on Sunday," Christian said.

Alan Jones talking after the Qualifying session said: "We are yet to get the bottom of the problems with the car, Christian is still having issues with the handling and I just hope we can get the set up right for the race tomorrow."

The car’s set up problems seemed finally to have been solved by the time they made it to the feature race, as Christian said: "I was finally in the race and we had even got the car up to thirteenth position before being bumped out by Team Indonesia, but that’s racing for you."

Team France took out first place, Team Netherlands were second with Team Switzerland coming in third. Team France’s strong showing throughout the series means they can wrap up the series at Laguna Seca.

The tenth round of the A1 Grand Prix of Nations will be held at Laguna Seca, California USA on 10 -12 March 2006. 

1 France Alexandre Premat 52.26.709
2 Netherlands Jos Verstappen 52.27.489 +0.780
3 Switzerland Neel Jani 52.30.234 +3.525
4 Germany Timo Scheider 52.31.297 +4.588
5 Italy Enrico Toccacelo 52.31.703 +4.994
6 Great-Britain Robbie Kerr 52.38.211 +11.502
7 Czech Republic Tomas Enge 52.41.549 +14.840
8 New Zealand Matt Halliday 52.45.537 +18.828
9 Austria Patrick Fiesacher 52.45.849 +19.140
10 Portugal Alvaro Parente 52.46.286 +19.577
11 Malaysia Alex Yoong 52.49.709 +23.000
12 Brazil Christian Fittipaldi 52.50.270 +23.561
13 USA Bryan Herta 52.50.585 +23.876
14 Lebanon Graham Rahal 52.52.226 +25.517
15 Canada Patrick Carpentier 52.39.578 1 lap
16 Indonesia Ananda Mikola 53.05.966 1 lap
17 China Tengyi Jiang 53.12.807 1 lap
18 South Africa Stephen Simpson 55.20.794 1 lap
19 Australia Christian Jones 20 laps 16 laps
20 Ireland Ralph Firman 16 laps 20 laps
21 Mexico Salvador Duran 6 laps 30 laps
22 Japan Hayanari Did not Shimoda start

The bonus point for the fastest race lap of the day went to A1 Team France who recorded a time of 1.21.100 in lap 17 of the Feature race.

Series Points to date - A1 Grand Prix of Nations, Parque Fundidora, Monterrey, Mexico - 26 February 2006

1 France 153
2 Switzerland 121
3 Great Britain 73
4 Brazil 70
5 Netherlands 69
6 New Zealand 64
7 Malaysia 53
8 Portugal 51
9 Ireland 50
10 Canada 44
11 Czech Republic 41
12 Italy 40
13 Australia 37
14 Mexico 28
15 Germany 25
16 South Africa 20
17 USA 20
18 Austria 12
19 Indonesia 10
20 Japan 8
21 China 6
22 Pakistan 4

The tenth round of A1 Grand Prix, the World Cup of Motorsport will be held at the Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca, California, USA on 10 - 12 March 2006

The final round is in Shanghai, China on 30 March – 2 April 2006

ALAN JONES – TEAM AUSTRALIA PRINCIPAL

Alan Jones needs no introduction to motorsport fans throughout Australia, or the world for that matter. Having been born into a motorsport family, with father Stan already a legend of the sport in Australia, Alan catapulted Formula One into the psyche of the Australian General Public after his triumph in the 1980 World Championship – the first Australian to do so since Sir Jack Brabham in the 1960’s. His World Championship was the first of many for the-then fledgling Williams Formula One team. Following his Formula One career, AJ as he is affectionately known, embarked on a career in domestic Touring Car racing and was the face of Australian Formula One television coverages for many years.

CHRISTIAN JONES

Christian Jones is the son of A1 Team Australia seat holder, Alan Jones and the third generation of one of Australia’s legendary motor racing dynasties. Having started racing karts at the age of thirteen, Jones competed with distinction at the highest levels of Australian karting, before moving on to finish second in the Australian Formula Ford Championship. More recently, he was crowned the Asian Formula 3 Champion, taking out the international series in 2004. The 25 year old currently lives on Queensland’s Gold Coast.

-Sam Dawson-
photos copyright A1 GP SERIES

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27.02.2006 / MaP

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