Karthikeyan Encouraged by Race Pace

Jordan driver Narain Karthikeyan was encouraged by his team's pace during today's San Marino Grand Prix at Imola

Karthikeyan was unable to match his best result in Formula One - 11th at the Malaysian Grand Prix - but the Indian was happy he was able to stay relatively close to the Red Bull cars.

The Jordan driver finished down in 14th place.

"This is the best race for me so far pace-wise," said the Indian. "I have made a decent start and I was able to keep close to the cars in front.

"I had a good first pit stop but I made a small mistake in the second one, which unfortunately cost me some time, and then I was on my own for the rest of the race.

"However it was a positive race for us as we were able to keep up with the Red Bull cars which is quite encouraging for the team."

Teammate Tiago Monteiro finished behind Karthikeyan, also one lap behind race winner Fernando Alonso.

It was the Portuguese rookie's fourth consecutive finish in four races.

"Four races and four finishes for me so I am quite pleased. It was quite a difficult race as I suffered from a puncture near the end of the race," said Monteiro. "Finishing the race was positive for us but what is even better is that we were able to reduce the gap with the cars in front.

"Now when the cars are passing us they do not just disappear as they used to do it in the first three races but now we can follow them for a while. This is definitely an improvement for the team."

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