Kovalainen Thanks Good Strategy

Race winner Heikki Kovalainen thanked his team for giving him the correct strategy to put him in place to claim the first ever GP2 win at Imola

Kovalainen Thanks Good Strategy

Kovalainen was stuck behind eventual second place finisher Jose Maria Lopez early in the race, and a call from the team changed the complexion of the race: "I caught Lopez quickly but was stuck behind him, so I came in [for a pitstop] and then could run in clean air.

"I knew I had the pace to win, so I just had to be good with the stops and I knew I was okay - if you have the pace you can definitely jump by the others in the stops. I just had to be conservative with the brakes, because I had a very soft pedal."

The Finn admitted he had been confident about taking the top spot before the race, noting: "I had lunch at Renault today and Flavio [Briatore] asked me if I was going to win - I laughed and said yes!"

The win continues his career progression after winning the World Series by Renault championship last year, a move he was expecting before the start of the year: "To be honest it's not too different to the other categories - you always race the same, don't you?"

It was also somewhat of a balm for team Arden International, who had been on pole with Nicolas Lapierre until his car died leaving the pits before the race, giving the squad no time to repair to the stricken car.

"I saw Lapierre just before the start and I just said I'm sorry to him, but I have to say that my car felt really great so I didn't think his problem would affect me. But because he started on pole and I won I think it looks really great for the team over the coming races."

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Series FIA F2
Author David Cameron
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