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May 13, 2014 - 06:43 AM
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Arden International - GP2 Series, Barcelona
Posted by: newsla on May 13, 2014 - 06:41 AM
GP2 News
Arden International - GP2 Series, Barcelona

The Circuit de Catalunya near Barcelona held Round two of the GP2 Series this weekend. A demanding circuit with high-tyre degradation, high-speed corners, a coarse track and hot weather conditions. Tom Dillmann (22) stepped in for Andre Negrao, whilst he recovered from back injury.


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Fridays Qualifying saw both Arden drivers use an option-option tyre strategy in the high temperatures at the Spanish circuit. Andre Negrao’s substitute for the weekend, Tom Dillmann posted his quickest time on his first run, putting him twelfth for his first race on his return to the Series. Rene also posted his quickest time on his first set of tyres, just under 0.3seconds behind Tom to line up eighteenth on the grid.

Opting for a long-run Feature race, both Tom and Rene started on the Prime tyre (Hard). After a false start where two cars stalled, a tousle into Turn 1, in which Rene received some front wing damage and a brief safety car period after an incident at Turn 10, the race was well underway with Rene eighth and Tom tenth after great starts from the Austrian and Frenchman respectively. Running long on the hard tyre, Tom pitted for the soft tyre option on lap 25, followed by his team-mate on lap 27. Rene came out eighth and Tom just behind in ninth. Just two laps before the end Rene pushed passed Tio Ellinas (MP Motorsport) to cross the line in seventh and Tom finished in ninth. Rene was later given a 20second penalty for failing to slow under yellow flags dropping him to fifteenth and moving Tom up to eighth.

Starting from pole position for Sundays sprint race, Tom nominated the prime tyre for the 26lap race. The Frenchman had a great start off the line, closely followed by Felipe Nasr into Turn 1. The battle was closely fought and the Brazilian slipped past Tom on lap two, followed by his 2013 team-mate Jolyon Palmer on lap five. Tom held onto third place and crossed the line to step up onto the podium. Renes race was a different story. After suffering damage during a collision caused by Artem Markelov on lap one, Rene’s steering was far too damaged to continue and was forced to retire on lap two.

Tom picked up 14points over the weekend to keep Arden’s seventh place in the Teams Championship.

Rene Binder: “Qualifying was not how we wanted it. To finish the session p18 was a little disappointing. I had a good start in the first race. I managed to overtake some people and I was p9 after the first lap. The race pace was good and the car felt good. I finished seventh, even with a damaged front wing so the result was good. However, I was given a 20second penalty having been too fast under yellows in the last sector after pit stop on my fresh tyres.

The second race start was good too, starting from fifteenth I moved up to eleventh then had some contact with the cars around me. Unfortunately, this really damaged my steering, it wasn’t straight at all so I had to come to the pits and stop. If I had been able to keep my p7 finish on Saturday and start on the front row on Sunday, I would have been happy and I think I couldve finished on the podium. It’s a shame but I look forward to Monaco now.”

Tom Dillmann: “It was quite unexpected when I found out on Wednesday I was going to race this weekend, but I was happy. It was a challenge to set up the car quickly but we had a solid Qualifying for our first time together. Race One went well, we had great pace and the car felt really good. I’m sure we could’ve been on the podium on Saturday. The track conditions changed a lot for Race two, so it was a little tougher than Saturdays race but the car was good enough to be on the podium. It was a successful weekend. Arden have showed they have a good car and I showed I deserved my place here in GP2.”

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