Lapierre Also Wins Feature Race

Nicolas Lapierre made it a French double in the second round of the inaugural A1 Grand Prix world cup of nations at the EuroSpeedway Lausitz in Germany

Lapierre Also Wins Feature Race

Starting from pole position, Lapierre bogged down off the line and allowed Switzerland's Neel Jani to take the lead. Malaysia's Alex Yoong made a superb start to take second position on the inside into the first corner, forcing Brazil's Nelson Piquet Junior to take a wide line through the left-hander which allowed Lapierre to move into third.

Lapierre passed Yoong, who had proved his credentials as a defender with a stoic drive to sixth in race one, on the first lap before setting about Jani. Switzerland's lead lasted only until lap four, as a strong run out of the last corner allowed Lapierre to take first position on the main straight.

Lapierre made his pitstop at the end of lap 15, handing the lead back to Lapierre, but once again led the race when the Swiss crew called in its driver on lap 20. Unfortunately, a slow pitstop cost Jani significant time and relegated him to seventh place.

This left Team Great Britain's Robbie Kerr in a remarkable second after making a very early pitstop from the back of the grid after a collision with America's Scott Speed had put him out of the day's first race.

Despite the deployment of the safety car to allow the recovery of former British Formula Three racer Karun Chandhok's Team India entry, Lapierre retained his lead unchallenged to the finish to lead home the Briton by nearly four seconds.

Team Canada driver Sean McIntosh claimed an excellent third place from seventh on the grid after also stopping early in the race. It was an impressive performance from a driver whose highest-level race experience came in the Formula Renault UK Championship, in which he finished second this year.

New Zealand finished fourth, with Jonny Reid unable to get past the Canadian in the closing stages, while Jani passed Team Ireland's Ralph Firman in the closing stages to take fifth.

Jos Verstappen of the Netherlands and Asian Formula Three ace Ananda Mikola finished seventh and eighth ahead of Japan's Hideki Noda. Noda was fortunate to finish after colliding with Piquet, who was one of the many to have to come back through the field after a disastrous pitstop. The Czech Republic's Tomas Enge was also collected in the incident, costing him a potential points finish.

German honour was upheld by ex-DTM racer Timo Scheider denying Portugal's Alvaro Parente the final point late in the race.

Team USA driver Scott Speed retired after just four laps, while South African debutant and IRL IndyCar Series front-runner Tomas Scheckter struggled with technical and setup problems throughout the race and finished only 22nd after gearbox problems.

Pos Country Time 1. France 58:45.700 2. Great Britain + 3.706 3. Canada + 5.458 4. New Zealand + 5.974 5. Switzerland + 7.071 6. Ireland + 8.081 7. Netherlands + 9.622 8. Indonesia + 16.706 9. Japan + 19.344 10. Germany + 21.860 11. Portugal + 24.740 12. Pakistan + 25.266 13. Mexico + 29.178 14. Australia + 30.890 15. Austria + 31.132 16. Malaysia + 45.381 17. China +1:17.441 18. Lebanon + 2 Laps 19. Czech Republic + 8 Laps 20. Brazil + 9 Laps 21. India + 16 Laps 22. South Africa + 20 Laps 23. Italy + 24 Laps 24. USA + 31 Laps Championship Standings: Pos Country Points 1. Brazil 30 2. France 29 = New Zealand 29 4. Switzerland 17 5. Australia 16 = Mexico 16 7. Great Britain 15 8. Canada 14 9. Malaysia 11 10. Germany 8 = Ireland 8 = Netherlands 8 13. Japan 6 14. South Africa 5 15. Pakistan 4 16. Indonesia 3 = Portugal 3 
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