A1 Team GBR tops the timesheets in Brands Hatch practice

A1 Team GBR tops the timesheets in Brands Hatch practice

02.05.2008: A1 Team GBR tops the timesheets in Brands Hatch practice

A1 Team Great Britain gets off to the best possible start at Brands Hatch with Robbie Kerr topping the timesheets in free practice A1 Team Great Britain won round one of the battle of Brands Hatch today when Robbie Kerr scored the fastest time in the afternoon’s free practice session as the season finale weekend of the 2007/08 A1GP World Cup of Motorsport got underway.

The day began with the rookie practice session this morning with James Winslow at the wheel of the GBR car. Winslow returned to the team after performing rookie duties at the Taupo, New Zealand and Sydney, Australia rounds earlier this season. He arrived fresh from an Australian Formula 3 victory last weekend and, during the 50-minute session, needed to reacclimatise himself to the A1GP car and the Brands Hatch circuit.

The team struggled with some balance issues during the rookie session and, as a result, was unable to get the lap times out of the car. Robbie Kerr took over driving duties this afternoon as he began his preparations for the weekend as the team get ready to fight for third place in the championship.

Despite the fact that Robbie was in P1 after his opening laps, he experienced some initial problems with the balance of the car and the team opted to bring the car in to address the issue. While he was in the pits, China and USA were able to set faster times until Robbie went back out and was once again right on the pace, setting another fastest time with a lap of 1:14.891.

This put him back at the top of the timesheets, three tenths ahead of second-placed China, and made him the only driver to break into the 1 minute 14’s.

Robbie Kerr: "The car was reasonable at the start but there were a few issues initially so, despite going quickest, we decided not to waste time on laps trying to solve the issues, but come in and take time to go through everything properly.

We took our time and unfortunately a few teams went faster, but they were drivers who knew the circuit well. We got the car back together and went out there again, setting the fastest lap.

We’re fairly confident but there is definitely room for improvement and more time to come – we just have to keep working at it and make sure everything is a hundred per cent for qualifying as that is key in A1GP. If you’re not there at the top end of the first flying lap, it can be an uphill struggle."

James Winslow: "It was quite a good session - we managed to get all the jobs done but weren’t quite as quick as we could have been. Jumping from an F3 to an A1GP car is a big difference so it took me a few laps to adapt and having had a look at the data we found that I was driving like I was in an F3 car.

So I reckon the key to being quick in A1GP is possibly not to drive any other race cars for a while! But overall I’m pleased with the way the session went, we did what we needed to do, and Robbie has done a fantastic job this afternoon. Hopefully things are looking good for the weekend."

Katie Clements, Team Principal: "It’s been a positive start but we cannot be complacent. The competition is so tight and you only have to look at today’s practice results to see just how competitive this weekend will be.

I’m very happy with the way we have started, but there is a long way to go yet, so we are now working hard ahead of tomorrow’s final practice and qualifying."


Saturday’s qualifying starts at 1415 GMT with Sunday’s 20 minute Sprint race starting at 1100 GMT and the 70 minute Feature race starting at 1430 GMT Sky Sports will broadcast all the live action from Brands Hatch from 2pm on Saturday 3 May and from 1pm on Sunday 4 May.

Rookie Practice (James Winslow) Laps: 21 Position: 10th Fastest Lap: 1:16.939 (+0.837)

Free Practice 2 (Robbie Kerr) Laps: 14 Position: 1st Fastest Lap: 1:14.891

A1 Team Great Britain is partnered by AquaSP, Playseats, Visit Britain and Metro.



- Victoria Henley - photo A1GP

Permanent-URL: http://www.automobilsport.com/a1-team-gbr-brands-hatch-robbie-kerr-james-winslow-katie-clements---36876.html

02.05.2008 / MaP

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