Oliver Turvey continued another weekend of firsts in the Abu Dhabi feature race today, sealing his maiden victory despite almost taking out himself and iSport team-mate Davide Valsecchi in the process.
Pole man Charles Pic made a poor start and was immediately jumped by Turvey, while Vasecchi found a way past near the end of the first lap. A few laps later Jules Bianchi and Javier Villa were in hot pursuit of the Frenchman. It got worse for Pic – he got jumped by both after his pitstop.
As Bianchi pulled a blinding move off around the outside of the last turn on Villa, Luca Filippi, who had started way back on the grid was closing in on Pic. An aggressive move to pass however went wrong and Pic was sent spinning into the run-0ff zone, dropping him way down the order and effectively ending any hopes of scoring points.
Meanwhile out front the iSport team-mates were duelling for the lead – Turvey came out of the pits marginally in front of Valsecchi, and immediately the Italian was on the attack. He got a run on Turvey around the outside ot Turns 11, 12 and 13, but the two made contact and took a brief trip into the run-off. Valsecchi got his way however and took first – but not for long. Turvey swept around the outside of him and regained the lead at the penultimate corner, and by now Bianchi and co. had caught up again.
Alberto Valerio‘s stranded Coloni triggered a Safety Car that bunched the pack up with only a handful of laps remaining – but it didn’t cause Turvey any problems – his restart was good and was able to fend off his team-mate for the remainder of the race. Bianchi and Villa held onto 3rd and 4th places, but Filippi’s car came to a halt halfway through the final lap, promoting Giacomo Ricci to 5th and Alexander Rossi to 6th, despite starting dead last on the grid.
“The start went really well,” said Turvey. “I got a great start and I was first into turn one and from then on I knew I had a good chance to win the race. We had good pace throughout the race, the car was really fantastic. The pit stop went well, Davide and I got very close straight after when I was on cold tyres but once they were up to temperature it was fine and it was a fantastic race.”
However several drivers had races to forget about. Marcus Ericsson almost had 8th and pole position for tomorrow’s Sprint race, but an overtaking move gone wrong by Michael Herck broke the former’s suspension and handed the last point to Max Chilton instead.
Another driver who was not having the best of times was Sergio Perez. He had made it up to 6th before pitting – but stalled and had to come back into the pits again. He finished 9th, but he was handed a 25 second penalty post-race for ignoring yellow flags and subsequently dropped down to 12th in the final results.
Pos Driver Team Time/Gap 1. Oliver Turvey iSport 1h04m55.310s 2. Davide Valsecchi iSport + 0.618s 3. Jules Bianchi ART + 2.589s 4. Javier Villa Arden + 7.372s 5. Giacomo Ricci DPR + 10.559s 6. Alexander Rossi Meritus + 13.718s 7. Michael Herck DPR + 19.800s 8. Max Chilton Ocean + 24.395s 9. Josef Kral Super Nova + 27.457s 10. Charles Pic Arden + 33.726s 11. Will Bratt Coloni + 34.300s 12. Sergio Perez Addax + 51.285s* 13. Vladimir Arabadzhiev Rapax + 1m05.390s 14. Luca Filippi Meritus + 1 lap/DNF 15. Alberto Valerio Coloni + 1 lap 16. Plamen Kralev Trident + 1 lap 17. Marcus Ericsson Super Nova + 3 laps/DNF Retirements: Fabio Leimer Ocean 27 laps Giedo van der Garde Addax 25 laps Daniel Zampieri Rapax 23 laps Dani Clos Trident 9 laps Christian Vietoris DAMS 7 laps Sam Bird ART 4 laps Edoardo Piscopo DAMS 0 lap *25s penalty applied