Vernay rues gear change error

Jean-Karl Vernay blamed a fluffed gear change for costing him victory in the Macau Grand Prix

Vernay rues gear change error

The Frenchman, who had won Saturday's qualification race, was leading the main event from Signature team-mate Edoardo Mortara, when he made a mistake just a few laps from home as he changed up through the gears on the exit of the Melco Hairpin.

That allowed Mortara to close enough to get into his slipstream as they crossed the start-finish line on lap 12 - and swoop past him into the lead as they raced down to Lisboa.

"I made a small mistake at the exit of the hairpin with the gears, and it was enough [for Mortara] to close the gap," said Vernay.

"Edoardo was really fast in the whole city section but I was really quick in the final two corners. That is why it was not possible for him to overtake me on the straight.

"I was pushing really hard everywhere, and I was really at the limit because I wanted to win. But when you are at the maximum like that, at some point you will make a mistake, and that is what happened."

Although disappointed with losing out on the victory, having come so close to winning on his first visit to the track, Vernay was philosophical about having shown so well on his rookie appearance.

"Yes for sure it is a good weekend, but when you are leading 12 laps of a 15 lap race and you lose the victory because of a mistake you can be angry," he said.

"For sure it was a good weekend, though. I am really happy for the team, they did a great job and the car was fantastic as we were quicker than the other teams. And with Edoardo we did a good job to finish P1-P2 - that is the most important thing from the weekend."

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