Monaco proves harsh test for DPR

Monaco proves harsh test for DPR

23.05.2009: DPR were unable to capitalise on the mid pack starts for today’s Monaco sprint race at the second round of the 2009 GP2 series. Michael Herck finished in 16th place with Giacomo Ricci retiring from 12th position with a suspected

DPR were unable to capitalise on the mid pack starts for today’s Monaco sprint race at the second round of the 2009 GP2 series. Michael Herck finished in 16th place with Giacomo Ricci retiring from 12th position with a suspected mechanical failure. Ricci started from 14th position with team mate Herck two places behind in 16th place. The grid filed off the grid cleanly in the opening lap, with all the drivers jostling for position.

Unfortunately Herck was caught up with Edoardo Mortara at the Lowes hairpin, with Herck sustaining front wing damage. The Romanian driver, who now lives in Monaco, continued on, but had to pit on the second lap for a new nose, dropping him to the back of the field. Ricci had a better start, gaining a position by the end of the first lap. He then inherited a position when Roldan Rodriguez dropped out after brushing the barriers to lie in 12th position.

He maintained this as the race settled down, but sadly he was unable to prove his capabilities on the narrow, demanding track, as he suffered a technical failure which caused him to cruise to a halt without any power, prematurely ending his race. Herck, lying in 23rd position after pitting for the new nose, used the race to gain experience of this unique circuit.

The planned 30 lap race was temporarily slowed by a safety car period with eight laps remaining and the DPR driver lying in 20th position. The field were soon released to return to full speed racing, until a few laps later when a huge accident for championship leader, Romain Grosjean, brought out the safety car for a second time. Herck was lying in 16th place and hoping to make up further ground at the restart, however the race was red flagged with two laps remaining and Herck taking 16th place.

Leon Price, Team Manager, DPR, concluded of the day,
“It’s all too easy for a minor knock at this track to have major repercussions, which is what happened with Michael today. Having been forced to pit for a new front wing and with the severe lack of overtaking opportunities, there was no route back for him. Giacomo was also unfortunate today. He could have had a top ten finish if he’d held position until the end, but motor racing often throws up the unexpected. The harsh realities of street racing were evident this afternoon with nine of the 25 cars failing to complete the race distance.”

DPR will now return to their Surrey base to prepare for the next round of this season’s GP2 Series, which will be held at Istanbul in Turkey from 6-7 June.


- Alison Hill - photo GP2

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23.05.2009 / MaP

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