Jean Alesi wins close finish in opening Dubai race
27.02.2009: Jean Alesi held off a charging Christopher Zoechling to win a close finish in the opening Speedcar Series race at Dubai Autodrome on Friday afternoon.Alesi grabbed the lead after a spectacular rolling start, over which surprise poleman Zoechling, a 21-yea
Jean Alesi held off a charging Christopher Zoechling to win a close finish in the opening Speedcar Series race at Dubai Autodrome on Friday afternoon.
Alesi grabbed the lead after a spectacular rolling start, over which surprise poleman Zoechling, a 21-year-old Dubai-based Austrian, complained that Jean had jumped ahead of him before the white line that marks the start of the race. Alesi disagreed, saying Zoechling was braking too much.
"I was on the power, he braked, so I braked, but I was straight back on the throttle," said Alesi. "It meant I had a bit more speed than him on the run to the first corner."
Alesi still had to brake late to dive around the outside of Zoechling at Turn 1, and they were followed by Vitantonio Liuzzi, Heinz-Harald Frentzen, Johnny Herbert and Gianni Morbidelli.
Frentzen passed Liuzzi for third at Turn 12, but had to drive hard to fend him off into the following 'bowl bend'. Liuzzi regained the position a lap later at Turn 10, only to run wide and let Frentzen and an opportunistic Johnny Herbert past. Liuzzi would later suffer a puncture, which put him out of the points.
At the front, Alesi pulled out a 3sec lead before Zoechling put in a mid-race attack. By lap 17, Zoechling was just 0.6secs behind, and pushing Alesi hard for the victory.
Despite the 30-degree air temperature, which was more like 55-degrees in the cars, the pace at the front was relentless. Despite Zoechling's charging drive, Alesi held him off to the finish, with a winning margin of 0.703secs.
"My car developed a little oversteer as the race progressed, but the Michelin tyres were very consistent," said Alesi. "It was very hot in the cockpit though. When I tried to get more cooling, there was nothing more to come."
Zoechling was happy with second, and said: "I ran out of time to catch Jean, unfortunately. I'm pleased with the result, but I've never been in such a hot racing car."
Frentzen finished a distant third, but suffered a gearbox problem in the closing stages. He lost second gear, but managed to coax his car home just ahead of series returnee David Terrien. "I didn't have as good a pace as I thought I would," said Frentzen. "Although I had the gearbox problem, I could not attack as much as I had planned."
Terrien took fourth place at the expense of Johnny Herbert, who he passed with a smart manoeuvre at Turn 12 - just in front of the office building in which Terrien works (he runs the kart track at Dubai Autodrome). Herbert finished fifth, ahead of Hasher Al Maktoum.
Morbidelli could only manage seventh after he was hit into a spin on the opening lap. Damien Pasini finished eighth, and will start Saturday's second race from reverse grid pole position.
Qatar star Marco Melandri didn't shine quite so brightly at Dubai. He ran eighth early on, but spun down to 13th position at Turn 14. He recovered to finish 10th.
Morbidelli still leads the championship by five points, with three races remaining, ahead of Herbert, Frentzen, Liuzzi and Alesi.
The Speedcar Series race weekend on February 27-28, 2009 will have 15 drivers representing eight teams at the Dubai Autodrome. The fourth round of the Series will feature three Arab drivers in the line up including Sheikh Ha weiter >>
For this weekend Speedcar event at the Durango cars wheel there will be not Jacques Villeneuve and Christopher Zoechling. Zoechling substitution was scheduled because his contract was expiring but Villeneuve will not be present because of a food intoxication. We wish him a very prompt healing. They will be substituted by the very fast David Terrien from weiter >>
Speedcar Series will run the fourth round of the season at the Dubai Autodrome on February 27-28, 2009. MotoGP rider Marco Melandri will return for the race weekend to try and repeat his surprising performance in Qatar with weiter >>
MotoGP star Marco Melandri came within four laps of a shock Speedcar Series victory under the lights at Losail in Qatar on Saturday night, but a mechanical failure took him out, handing the victory to Vitantonio Liuzzi, who weiter >>
Gianni Morbidelli won the first-ever Speedcar Series night race at Losail in Qatar on Friday night, heading home fellow Italian ex-Formula 1 racer Vitantonio Liuzzi.The rolling start was a bit chaotic, with poleman Heinz-Harald Frentzen rushing off into the lead as fellow front-row man Jacques Villeneuve didn't make the best of starts, allowing Jean Alesi to grab second on the run t weiter >>
Vitantonio Liuzzi set the quickest time at practice this evening at the Losail International Circuit for the first ever Speedcar Series night event this weekend. He was followed very closely by Jean Alesi and Gianni Morbidel weiter >>
Speedcar Series is at Losail International Circuit for its first night race this weekend on 12-14 February, 2009. Running its third round of the season, this will also be the first time that Speedcar Series has raced in Qata weiter >>
MotoGP star Marco Melandri will be making his Speedcar Series debut at the Losail International Circuit on February 12-14, 2009. The World Champion of the 2002 MotoGP (250 cc) will team up with Heinz Harald Frentzen driving for Team Lavaggi.. The Italian biker will for the first time be racing a car on a permanent circuit having appeared in a touring c weiter >>
The Qatar Motor and Motorcycle Federation (QMMF) will host Speedcar Series' first night race at the Losail International Circuit on 12-14 February, 2009. The agreement, signed between the two parties, covers the Grand Racing weiter >>
Johnny Herbert won the second Speedcar Series race held in Bahrain this afternoon. It was a win that came down to the wire with Gianni Morbidelli in second spot and a surprise podium for new driver Thomas Biagi in third. The reverse grid weiter >>
Jean Alesi won the first Speedcar Series race of the weekend at the Bahrain International Circuit. The Frenchman who started second on the grid was joined on the podium by Heinz Harald Frentzen in second position and Joh weiter >>
Jacques Villeneuve took the start from the tenth place of the starting grid, because of an electric problem which slowed him during qualifying, and finished in the same position because of an hard contact with a competitor. Ch weiter >>
Heinz Harald Frentzen topped the hour long Speedcar Series practice session this afternoon at the Bahrain International Circuit ahead of two races to follow this weekend on Friday and Saturday. The German d weiter >>
The Speedcar Series Season opened in Dubai last month. Vitantonio Liuzzi swept the Qualifying session and Race 1. He was joined on the podium by Heinz Harald Frentzen in second place and Gianni Morbidelli in third. Liuzzi's team mate, UAE's Sheikh Hasher Al Maktoum finished 5th in the first race bringing the UP Team to the top of the points scale. Season 1 Champion Briton Johnn weiter >>
Speedcar Series' second season begins this weekend at the Dubai Autodrome with 14 cars on the grid. The Speedcars will be run by 7 teams from six countries across Europe, the Middle East and United States.
Two of the current seven teams participated in Speedcar Series last season. They are German Phoenix Racing who also race in DTM, weiter >>
Formula One Force India driver Vitantonio Liuzzi clocked the quickest lap at the Speedcar Series test that ended today at the Dubai Autodrome. He was among five other drivers that took the wheel at the final test before the start of Season 2 on 5-6 December, 2008. Liuzzi did not drive yesterday but managed to clock the fastest lap at this afternoon's session, quicker weiter >>
Jacques Villeneuve set the pace on the first day of the Speedcar Series test session at the Dubai Autodrome. This 2-day test is the final one before the start of Season 2 on 5-6 December, 2008. weiter >>
L-R: James Grunwell (THA), Johnny Herbert (GBR), Chris Buncombe (GBR) and Sakon Yamamoto (JPN). Speedcar Series Testing, Dubai, UAE, 10 November 2008 (photo Agnes Carlier)
19-year-old British weiter >>
Jean Alesi set the fastest lap time for the second day in a row at the Speedcar Series test session that wrapped up today at the Dubai Autodrome.
Canadian Paul Tracy, former Indycar champion, began the morning with the quickest lap. That was before German driver Uwe Alzen and Alesi's nemesis from Season 1 pushed the Frenchman in a battle to set the pace. They wer weiter >>
Speedcar Series today conducted the first of a 2 day test session at the Dubai Autodrome. Eight teams and 14 drivers attended the event.
Teams from various parts of the globe turned out to test the 6.2 litre V8 Speedcars including David Price Racing from the UK; Malaysian team Meritus Racing, Christian Jones Racing from Australia and German Phoenix Racing that also ran i weiter >>
For Season 2, Speedcar Series is making the prize money more attractive to teams and drivers alike. The 3 million dollar prize pot includes 500,000 US dollars to the winning championship driver and an additional 500,000 US dollars to the winning championship team.
Drivers will also win pre-determined amounts of money for ea weiter >>
Speedcar Series announced today the appointment of Claudio Berro as Operations Director before the onset of Season 2 this December.
With 25 years of experience in the world of motorsport, Berro brings with him invaluable experience having served as Sporting Director of Peugeot-Italy, Team Manager and Press Officer of Ferrari F1 and then General Manager of Maserati and Fia weiter >>
Speedcar Series has just spent 3 days testing new modifications made to their custom built cars. The brand new engines, suspension and composite panelled bodies were put through a gruelling routine at the Dubai Autodrome from 14-16 October, 2008.
Three Speedcars were set up for the test this week and among the host of teams and drivers in attendance were former F1 stars J weiter >>
After a successful first season, Speedcar Series is unveiling new and exciting changes ahead of Season 2 scheduled to flag off in December this year.
Former F1 drivers will be back behind the wheel this season along with a host of other new teams and drivers battling it out for a substantial prize pot of 3 million US dollars.
The provisional calendar for th weiter >>
Speedcar Series has just completed a day and a half of rigorous testing on new components for the stockcars this afternoon at the Dubai Autodrome ahead of the second season commencing in October this year.
The stockcar tested on the track has been set up with new and improved prototypes of the suspension, Brembo braking sys weiter >>
Nicolas Navarro, pilote Speedcar Series #71
Dubaï, 7ème et 8ème manches de la Speedcar Series, 11 et 12 avril 2008
La première saison de Speedcar Series s’est achevée à Dubaï, là où elle avait été lancée à la fin du mois de janvier. Auteur d’une impressionnante pole position, Nicola weiter >>
Speedcar Series' inaugural season came to a close last night with an awards gala celebrated at the One and Only Royal Mirage in Jumeirah, Dubai. Attended by drivers, teams, staff and socialites the gala recognised achievements by contributors and pilots across the season
A spectacular video with the highlights of the season started the evening off and was well received, j weiter >>
Johnny Herbert scored his second race victory of the weekend at the Dubai Autodrome on Saturday to seal the inaugural Speedcar Series title.
Herbert actually ended the season level on points with David Terrien, but scored more wins than the Frenchman throughout the season. Title rivals Uwe Alzen and Jean Alesi, who both started the event in stronger points positions, both weiter >>
Johnny Herbert scored a long overdue win in the first race of the Speedcar Series finale at Dubai Autodrome on Friday.
The three-time Formula 1 grand prix winner, who was dominating the last race in Bahrain until he was forced out with a gear selection issue, came out on top of the 40-minu weiter >>
Gianni Morbidelli won the second Speedcar race today, taking the win away from Uwe Alzen who was penalised by the Bahrain Grand Prix stewards of the meeting for an incident on the track.
Alzen receiving a 10 second penalty for gaining an unfair advantage by cutting a corner to overtake Marchy Lee on the inside during the race. Morbidelli who finished second 8.489 seconds weiter >>
Uwe Alzen made amends for his exclusion from Saturday's Speedcar race in Bahrain by winning the Sunday event. The German had won the first race on the road, but was later excluded for not wearing his HANS device, which is mandated by the rules. Helped by a high rate of attrition, he was able to win the second race from the back of the grid.
"The race was absolutely fantas weiter >>
Uwe Alzen's victory in the first race this morning was cancelled by the Bahrain Support Race Stewards of the meeting. The German driver was excluded from the race classification based on an official protest lodged by another team.
The Stewards found that the driver had not worn his HANS (Head and Neck Safety Device) during the race in contravention of the Series weiter >>
Uwe Alzen took the lead of the Speedcar Series after scoring his third win of the season in a dramatic Saturday morning race in Bahrain. The German beat the strongest field of F1 drivers assembled thus far.
New to the series for this race were 1997 World Champion Jacques Villeneuve, and his former Williams t weiter >>
Johnny Herbert took pole position on the grid of the first Speedcar Series race at the Bahrain Grand Prix. The qualifying session determined the starting grid for the first of two race days that begin tomorrow.
For most of the 45 minute qualifying, Johnny stayed ahead on the time board. The Briton was ousted by Stefan Johansson on a couple of laps before quickening his pa weiter >>
Best race you took part in... "Monza in my first year in Formula Nissan. I started from eighth place and fought my way onto the third step of the podium!
Your toughest season... The 2005 GP2 Series. I didn’t have much experience and the overall level was very high.
Best team-mate... Jean Alesi. We were in the weiter >>
So the Speedcar concept suits you down to the ground...
"Yes, it’s got everything I love. It’s like going back to basics. On our cars the only electronic device is the engine management system. All the rest is mechanical. The car’s not easy to drive and that makes the races all the more interesting. Even if you’re 100% concentrated it’s almost impossible to weiter >>
The arrival of Jacques Villeneuve in Speedcar Series is the red-letter event of the Bahrain weekend round of the championship. The 1997 F1 world champion has confirmed his participation in the last two meetings of the season. JV is among the most eclectic drivers in motor racing with a victory in the Indy 500 to his name.
The 37-year-old Canadian has set himself a double weiter >>
With the Speedcar Series inaugural season at the halfway stage Jean Alesi and Uwe Alzen have pulled out a lead over their rivals.
They have each scored two victories, so the Frenchman and the German look odds-on title favourites. With just a week to go to the final round on the Dubai circuit, will one of the two drivers pull out a decisive advantage in Bahrain?
On weiter >>
Speedcar Series has released its final driver entry list today for the race weekend at the Bahrain Grand Prix between Friday and Sunday, April 4-6, 2008
The latest additions to the driver line up are '97 F1 World Champion Jacques Villeneuve, former F1 driver Heinz Harald Frentzen and Le Mans 24 Hours winner, Klaus Ludwig who also drove for the Series in Indonesia. weiter >>
Nicolas Navarro, pilote Speedcar Series #71
Sepang, Grand Prix de Malaisie
3ème et 4ème manches de la Speedcar Series, 22 et 23 mars 2008
Pour la première fois de sa jeune histoire, la Speedcar Series a eu le privilège d’évoluer en lever de rideau de la Formule weiter >>