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Apr 06, 2014 - 05:52 PM
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Dams, GP2 Series, Round 1, Barhain
Posted by: newsla on Apr 06, 2014 - 05:51 PM
GP2 News
Dams, GP2 Series, Round 1, Barhain


Pole position, a top-3 finish and a victory for Jolyon Palmer, the early leader of the drivers' championship, while DAMS takes first place in the teams' title chase! The Sarthe-based team left its mark on the opening round of the 2014 season. Stéphane Richelmi who was unlucky in the first race (started 4th on the grid) proved his skills behind the wheel the next day with a fantastic comeback from 19th to 5th place!

 

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The information gathered during preliminary testing on the Sakhir circuit was of little use this weekend as the nocturnal qualifying conditions were much cooler. However, this gave DAMS the opportunity to prove its capacity to adapt as the technical squad got the setups just right.

The result of the two races is very positive, especially for Jolyon Palmer. He fluffed his start in heat one and lost all the benefits of his superb pole position. The Englishman was able to fight his way back into the top 3, and despite having to nurse tyres that were completely shot he held on to third till the flag. Richelmi had to cope with a broken front rollbar in the first heat. In the sprint he put on a stunning display in what is certainly one of his best drives in GP2.

The next round in Barcelona in a month poses a whole other challenge on a layout with very different technical characteristics for both drivers and engineers in different weather conditions. Last year, however, DAMS locked out the front row and Richelmi clinched his first pole position. A repeat performance in perspective?

François Sicard, Managing Director:" Last year we learned to our cost that it's very important to make a good start to the season. This time we did it! Congratulations to everybody for this excellent weekend. The speed was there, the team carried out great pit stops and the drivers were incredible. Jolyon combined speed and mastery to score a podium and a great victory, and Stephane's second race was quite simply stunning. Our confidence has received a great boost as we set off for Barcelona."

Jolyon Palmer: "I'm really delighted to give the team their first victory of the year; they did a great job to prepare such a quick car for me. I'm a bit angry because I messed up my start in the first heat. We're up against tough rivals, but after this weekend we've got bulletproof confidence."

Stéphane Richelmi: "I was rather disappointed after qualifying as I could have clinched a place on the front row. In the main race I had a rollbar problem and I wasn't able to fight at the front. That's part of racing. Luckily, I had great fun on Sunday and I more than made up for the previous day. The car was amazing and I was able to push from start to finish. So a big thanks to the whole team and I can't wait to be in Barcelona."

Next round: Barcelona (Spain) 10-11 May

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