Virgin: Night of good fortune and misfortune
14 November, 2011
Nov.14 (Marussia Virgin Racing) Timo Glock finished today’s Abu Dhabi Grand Prix in 19th position at the Yas Marina Circuit. Jérôme didn’t have the same luck and was forced to retire on lap 18.
Timo got off to a fantastic start, climbing up to 16th position during the first lap and maintaining good pace. Jérôme also managed to gain positions but unfortunately his race was cut short when he suffered a problem with the front brakes and he was forced to retire.
Timo followed a two-stop strategy, pitting on laps 22 and 44, before bring car number 24 home.
Timo Glock, Race Driver #24
“Overall it was quite a good race today. I had a strong start, the speed was not too bad and I was in front of a couple of quicker guys, even though in the end they caught us up. I just drove my race and my engineer kept me updated about the gap to the guys behind, which was quite easy to manage. In the second pit-stop I think Ricciardo pushed a bit more, but I still managed to stay in front of him as well as keeping an eye on the rear tyres. In the end I got the best out of the car even though I have to say it was a bit difficult with the last set of tyres because the Medium compound combined with all the blue flags made it difficult to get them up to temperature. But it was a good race and the team did a good job.”
Jérôme D’Ambrosio, Race Driver #25
“What a shame! I had a good start and was fighting hard against the HRTs, but I had a problem with the brakes and that was my race over. But we will work hard and continue to be motivated to finish the season in Brazil on a high.”
John Booth, Team Principal
“A good start to the race saw Timo running as high as 16th in the opening laps. Unfortunately, Jérôme was left behind both of the HRTs, however he was pushing them hard during the early laps. Then on lap 17, Jérôme reported some difficulty with the brakes and also that there was some debris coming out of the left front wheel. We immediately pitted him, instigating a pit stop with inspection of the front braking system. It was clear though that it was not possible to continue and we retired him. Meanwhile on track, Timo was having a good opening stint, pulling a comfortable gap out over Liuzzi and Ricciardo, who had stopped very early. A small issue at his first stop lost him a bit of time, however he still came out in front of Ricciardo. For the second stint Timo managed his tyres to ensure that he could get as far as possible. It was a little like India in that by staying on the Soft tyre, he would be quicker than the HRTs, which again had stopped early for the Medium tyre. However, we came up against Trulli – again on the Medium tyre – so we had to stop earlier than we would have liked. At this point with the HRTs clearly behind, we opted to save gearbox and engine, turning everything down for the last five laps. Given our record of reliability it is disappointing that we haven’t achieved a two-car finish in the last two races, however this will be our strong focus for Brazil.”