Antonio Giovinazzi was delighted to have taken victory in the 74th running of the Grand Prix de Pau, with the Jagonya Ayam with Carlin driver continuing his remarkable start to the season with nine podium finishes in the nine races so far.
The Italian had high hopes heading into the weekend that he could take the victory around the legendary street circuit, and was able to take advantage of the troubles of long-time leader Jake Dennis to take the spoils.
“I had great hopes to gain this victory,” said Giovinazzi. “The street circuit of Pau is in the history of Motorsport since so many decades, so I’m proud to be the winner no. 74 of its historical Grand Prix.
“Being able to win the Grand Prix de Pau, a race that so many great drivers such as Lewis Hamilton have won, is fantastic. And, of course, I am happy that I have made it onto the podium again in the ninth race of the season.
“Moreover, to win on a street circuit is always something special and this day will remain an important step in my career.”
After finishing second in race one and third in race two, Giovinazzi started on the front row for the finale, and on fresh rubber was able to maintain the gap to Dennis, and when the Briton was forced to slow with a damaged suspension, the Italian was able to get passed and control the race until the chequered flag.
“Probably, today’s race was the most difficult of the three of this weekend,” reflected Giovinazzi. “In each of them, I gained the final place overtaking my opponents.
“Today, moreover, I had to manage the race in a different way. The technicians of Jagonya Ayam with Carlin team and I chose the strategy to have new tyres for Sunday’s race, saving the final set in the first two races.
“Today I recovered in a few laps the short advantage Jake gained on me, trying to overtake him in the last laps. Finally, I was able to take the lead in the last kilometres.
“Later, he had some problems with his car and I’m sorry to not have found him on the podium. This victory reinforced my leadership in the European standings and, once more, I have to thank so much all the people of my team and of Jagonya Ayam to give me the chance to race at so high level.
“It’s great to get the win here at the Pau Grand Prix. We’ve been pretty quick
all weekend but overtaking is tough around this circuit. I’m thankful to the team for giving me a good car and pleased to defend my lead in the championship.”