Rosberg Takes Dominant Win
Nico Rosberg has taken his second GP2 win in a row, after dominating the first race at Silverstone today, ahead of Heikki Kovalainen and Alex Premat
Rosberg, looking confident ahead of the race, was handed an early present when front row starter Nelson Piquet Jr's car stopped on track as the cars circulated to the grid ahead of the warm up lap. It was a heartbreaking blow for Piquet, who was looking for a strong points score to get his Championship challenge back on track.
At the start Rosberg tore away from third placed starter Heikki Kovalainen, who signaled his intentions by forming up pointing to the right side of the track, with Adam Carroll slotting in behind the Finn.
Behind the front three Neel Jani headed a fast moving queue, with Scott Speed, Jose Maria Lopez and Giorgio Pantano lining up immediately behind the Swiss driver.
Ryan Sharp, driving in his home race, was back in the pits early after his car stopped on the first lap, as Rosberg pushed for an early advantage at the front. Further back Premat and Gimmi Bruni came in for an extremely early stop in an attempt to get some clear track in front of them and push ahead as the others stopped after them.
It was clearly working for Premat: on lap four he was the fastest man on track after and extremely quick stop, and the ART drivers were clearly on form - teammate Rosberg was already almost two seconds ahead of Kovalainen.
On lap nine Scott Speed and Giorgio Pantano came in for their stops, with Jani in two laps later as the front running pitstop strategies were beginning to emerge. Jani, after a good stop, was out just ahead of Bruni and pushing hard for a good points haul.
The leading pair were in together on lap 15, with Rosberg bringing a 3.8 second lead in and losing most of it in the stop, as Kovalainen exited on his tail. Carroll was in a lap later, followed one tour afterwards by Clivio Piccione, and the pitstops were complete.
The race order had re-established itself: Rosberg led from Kovalainen and Premat, for whom the pitstop strategy had worked like a treat, with Carroll, Speed, Jani, Piccione and Bruni filling out the points paying positions.
Further back Nicolas Lapierre and Juan Cruz Alvarez were at the start of a battle which was to last for the remainder of the race - the pair were all over each other, sliding sideways through corners together but somehow just managing to avoid running into each other.
On lap 20 Can Artam had a rush of blood to the head: seeing a gap which wasn't there he tried going inside of Xandi Negrao, tapping the Brazilian into a spin which should never have happened before continuing.
Back at the front Rosberg had re-established his dominance, leading Kovalainen by 2.5 seconds and controlling the race masterfully. The Finn was clearly fast - he was leaving Premat behind at a great rate - but he was unable to do anything about the speed of the leader.
Scott Speed was now ramping up the pressure on fourth placed Adam Carroll, driving all over the rear of his car and hoping to force him into an error. The pair ran together for ten laps or so, but it seemed certain that an incident was on the cards.
And so it proved - on lap 29 Carroll ran slightly wide and put two wheels onto the grass through Stowe, which flicked the car around before he could do anything to arrest the movement. His car control was excellent though, and he snapped the car out of the spin and back on track, but Speed was already through and gone.
But up at the front it was all over - Rosberg controlled the speed of the race and finished just ahead of Kovalainen, who he allowed to close up at the end, while there was a huge gap back to third placed Premat, who also claimed fastest lap. Speed slotted in behind the Frenchman, with Jani just ahead of Piccione.
Bruni and Pla filled out the final points positions, just ahead of Lopez, while Carroll limped back to the pits with a flat right rear tyre, a victim of his off track excursion and well out of the points.
CLASSIFIED: Pos Driver Team Time 1. Rosberg ART Grand Prix 58:26.373 2. Kovalainen Arden International + 0.564 3. Premat ART Grand Prix + 26.301 4. Speed iSport International + 29.719 5. Jani Racing Engineering + 50.546 6. Piccione Durango + 51.055 7. Bruni Coloni Motorsport + 56.807 8. Pla DPR + 58.089 9. Lopez DAMS + 58.385 10. Lapierre Arden International +1:00.991 11. Alvarez Campos Racing +1:01.358 12. Pantano Super Nova International +1:03.707 13. Yoshimoto BCN Competicion +1:04.367 14. Monfardini Durango +1:06.169 15. Viso BCN Competicion +1:18.983 16. Hernandez Campos Racing +1:29.576 17. Garcia Racing Engineering +1:35.088 18. Artam iSport International + 1 Lap 19. Negrao Hitech Piquet Sports + 1 Lap 20. Lauda Coloni Motorsport + 1 Lap 21. Carroll Super Nova International + 1 Lap NOT CLASSIFIED: Driver Team On Lap Fauzy DAMS 31 Sharp DPR 1 Piquet Jr. Hitech Piquet Sports 0 Fastest Lap: Premat, 1:35.326 on lap 4 2005 Championship Standings, Round 6 (race 10): Drivers: Teams: 1. Kovalainen 60 1. Arden International 72 2. Rosberg 41 2. ART Grand Prix 63 3. Carroll 34 3. Super Nova International 44 = Speed 34 4. Coloni Motorsport 36 5. Bruni 33 5. iSport International 36 6. Lopez 25 6. DAMS 25 7. Jani 24 7. Racing Engineering 24 8. Premat 22 8. Hitech Piquet Sports 19 9. Piquet Jr. 18 9. Durango 13 10. Piccione 12 10. BCN Competicion 10 = Lapierre 12 11. DPR 5 12. Pantano 10 12. Campos Racing 3 13. Yoshimoto 8 14. Pla 3 = Hernandez 3 = Lauda 3 17. Artam 2 = Viso 2 = Sharp 2 20. Monfardini 1 = Negrao 1
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