Pantano keeps cool to win in Turkey

Giorgio Pantano won the GP2 Series feature race at Istanbul Park today in convincing fashion, leading from start to finish in his Racing Engineering car

Pantano keeps cool to win in Turkey

Even though he had a late safety car to contend with, Pantano kept his cool to win by 1.7 seconds ahead of Romain Grosjean (ART Grand Prix) and Andi Zuber (Piquet Sports).

Pantano took the lead from the start, holding his pole position advantage into Turn 1. Behind him, Grosjean grabbed second from Zuber, while Adam Carroll (who started third) and Bruno Senna (who started fifth) both bogged down badly.

Senna's race was ruined when he clipped another car on the approach to Turn 1, damaging his front wing. He would finish 15th after being forced to make two pitstops.

At the front, Pantano pulled out as much as a 7.8 seconds lead over Grosjean, but all his good work was undone by the safety car, required for Alberto Valerio's spin at Turn 8, which left him stranded just off the racing line at the fastest corner on the circuit.

This allowed the three leaders to pit under yellows, and they resumed in the same order. Zuber lost time at the restart, which was effectively a six-lap sprint to the finish on new rubber.

Pantano pulled out a three-second lead immediately, and then cruised to victory, while Zuber made a poor restart and had to fight his way back onto Grosjean's tail, which he only managed at the finish.

Karun Chandhok was a lonely fourth for iSport, ahead of Vitaly Petrov (Campos), Sebastien Buemi (Arden) and Javier Villa, who dropped from sixth to eighth when passed by Buemi and Carroll, but got one place back on the penultimate lap.

Carroll will now start Sunday's race from reverse grid pole.

Classified:

Pos  Driver      Team                  Time
 1.  Pantano     Racing Engineering    56:51.163
 2.  Grosjean    ART Grand Prix        +   1.792
 3.  Zuber       Piquet Sports         +   2.252
 4.  Chandhok    iSport International  +  11.321
 5.  Petrov      Campos Team           +  12.474
 6.  Buemi       Trust Team Arden      +  13.773
 7.  Villa       Racing Engineering    +  14.894
 8.  Carroll     FMS International     +  16.675
 9.  Conway      Trident Racing        +  17.743
10.  Valles      BCN Competicion       +  19.012
11.  Tung        Trident Racing        +  20.346
12.  Rodriguez   FMS International     +  21.238
13.  Nunes       DPR                   +  22.507
14.  Buurman     Trust Team Arden      +  23.294
15.  Senna       iSport International  +  23.765
16.  Filippi     ART Grand Prix        +  1 Lap
17.  Hanley      Campos Team           +  1 Lap
18.  Valerio     Durango               +  2 Laps
19.  Soucek      Super Nova Racing     +  3 Laps

Classified:                                 
                                               
Pos  Driver      Team                 Laps
     D'ambrosio  Dams                  29
     Maldonado   Piquet Sports         19
     Pavlovic    BCN Competicion       16
     Ricci       DPR                    8
     Parente     Super Nova Racing      7
     Kobayashi   Dams                   1

Fastest lap: Zuber, 1:33.482 on lap 33
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