Pics: A1GP, words: Anestis Mantzouranis
– The only way to describe it was an EXTRAVAGANZA of driving showmanship! An excellence in display of driving skills from all 22 drivers as the skies of Sydney poured down torrential rains over the tarmac of Sydney’s Eastern Creek for the A1GP Feature Race !It was quite clear up to a few minutes prior to the race start that the rains were set in, so all but 2 teams raced on full treaded `Wet’ tires.A1 Team Australia’s car “Jackaroo”, was running well and driver John Martin was in fine form as he settled into the treacherous wet weather! Constantly checking his position against other cars via radio to his crew, he was left on track until Lap 11 for that all important Pit Stop (programmed compulsory for between laps 8 to 16).With awesome support from the Aussie pit
crew, John was back out on the tarmac in 15.23 seconds!Martin had started in position 14 and had given his all to move to position 6 after A1 Team USA and A1 Team France slid off the track to lose a second each. Martin was now well placed to maneuver into position 5.As A1 Team France were still ahead of the Aussies, an unfortunate stall coming out of the Pits on the second window meant that Martin’s prayers were answered and the Jackaroo was now in 5th!Martin was now un-stoppable and on Lap 33 set the second fastest lap time for the day!The Pit Crew, managed by Team manager Adam Gotch, were in top form and the Jackaroo held record times of in and out (15.56 in the second session).Martin’s focus was now to hold that 5th spot ahead of the challenge coming in from A1 Team Canada who were forever pushing from behind. Under pressure, Martin pushed the Jackaroo a little too hard and went into the grass on turn 9. In true champion form, Martin was able to recover and leave only a second between him and Wickens from A1 Team Canada.
Only 3 laps later, Martins and the Jackaroo came home before a wet but appreciative crowd in 5th place, representing the best result over the ’07/’08 period and and 11 points going into the pockets of the Aussie.
John also went on to thank the massive home crowd for their support in abysmal conditions, and extended gratitude to the organizers and media.
A1 Team Australia seat holder Alan Jones had this to say as well …
But it was A1 Team South Africa’s day and much to the elation of driver Adrian Saugg who also drove a sensational race to take out first place and cross the line almost 20
This is now a huge boost for the South African team as it gears up for its home event in three weeks time.
It was A1 Team Great Britain’s Robbie Kerr who stood alongside Adrian holding the second place trophy after falling back a place behind China.
It was an unfortunate turn of events for A1 Team France who were awarded a drive through penalty for causing an
Working very hard to close the gap from the back of the grid, where he started after problems with the clutch left him hampered and stalled, Duval found himself in 6th spot in a
In an ambitious but reckless move in Lap 20, Duval snuck down the inside of the American car forcing Summerton to
A thrilling race for the home crowd, an incredible display of skillful wet weather driving and a phenomenal result for the home crowd and the Jackaroo’s points tally!
Feature race results
2007/08 A1GP World Cup of Motorsport points standings
Fastest lap: A1 Team South Africa set the fastest lap in the Feature race, lapping the Eastern Creek circuit in 1m.39.034s with a speed of 142.9 kph on lap 33 of the 42 lap race.
Next race: A1GP Durban, South Africa, 22-24 February 2008
A1 Team Australia’s
A1 Team Australia: the Pit Crew that were
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