Valsecchi wins Bahrain Feature Race
|3.||G. van der Garde||+14.824|
27 April 2012 – Davide Valsecchi extended his GP2 championship lead by taking a dominant victory in this afternoon's Feature Race at the Bahrain International Circuit. The Italian, driving for current title holders DAMS, crossed the line 7.711 seconds ahead of Switzerland's Fabio Leimer, while pole-sitter Giedo van der Garde completed the podium.
Van der Garde led away well from the front of the grid as the lights went out, before managing to pull clear as the race settled down. However, tyre degradation soon became an issue for the Dutchman and he slipped back to as low as fourth after the pit stop phase. Valsecchi had been able to steal the lead before he pitted, with his fresh rubber then used wisely to hold off Leimer in the latter half of the race.
After Van der Garde moved back into third, a fierce battle developed behind. Fourth place had looked set to go to the fast-starting Marcus Ericsson, but tyre wear got the better of the iSport driver and saw him drop to eighth. Fourth spot ultimately went to Luiz Razia, with Max Chilton, Rio Haryanto and Felipe Nasr in close company. Behind Ericsson, Tom Dillmann and Johnny Cecotto Jr. rounded out the top ten.
Saturday's Sprint Race begins at 2pm local time (BST +2)