GP2: Championship wide open at Istanbul Park

By LJ Hutchins

CalendarThursday, August 23rd, 2007

 
 

Round eight of the 2007 GP2 championship is due to take place at Istanbul Park this weekend with the season’s championship battle turning into a nail-bitingly close contest.

The top line for the event is that, with four rounds remaining, Germany’s Timo Glock leads the championship for iSport International with 55 points. But his great rival the Brazilian driver Lucas di Grassi, racing for ART Grand Prix, is sitting on his rear bumper with 54 points in the bag.

Trident Racing’s talented Venuzuelan Pastor Maldonado, currently eighth in the championship, has fractured his collarbone in a bike accident. He is to be replaced by Argentine Ricardo Risatti, an experienced open-wheel racer who tested for several GP2 teams during the off-season.

And Finland’s Henri Karjalainen is to replace his countryman Markus Neimela at BCN Competicion, due to long-term problems caused by the latter’s dislocated shoulder.

Right, that’s what everyone else is up to. How about the British drivers?

Northern Ireland’s Adam Carroll, racing for FMS International, is on a roll after getting a race win and a second-place at the Hungaroring. He goes to Istanbul with 24 points in hand and is hoping to capitalise on his Hungary successes in the upcoming race.

He said: “It is a great circuit and I really enjoy driving here. It is a real mix of everything; fast corners and lots of up and down sections as it is up in the hills.

“The team and I know what we need to do and I hope the momentum from the last two results will spur us all on and we can push for some more good results.”

Mike Conway, racing for Super Nova International had a hard day’s work in Hungary where he managed to pull off an eighth-place finish after starting 23rd on the grid. However, he was unable to add to his 13-point tally.

He said: “From dead last on the grid, at a track where overtaking is supposed to be almost impossible, it was very satisfying to come away with a top eight result.

“We need to get back on track in Turkey and start scoring points again. It’s another new track for me, so I’d like to get some experience there before the race weekend.

“That’s what this weekend proved; when it’s a difficult track to drive, experience counts for a lot. I’m going to give a big push for Istanbul.”

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