Cecotto wins from 18th on the grid
|1.||J. Cecotto Jr.||58:16.075|
21 July 2012 – Johnny Cecotto Jr. has picked up his second GP2 victory of the season, winning at Hockenheim following Formula 1 qualifying on Saturday afternoon. The Venezuelan, who started way down in 18th position on the grid, saw a dramatic tyre gamble pay off.
On a damp track, only Cecotto and Stéphane Richelmi decided to start on Slick tyres, with the former leading home Fabio Leimer by just under ten seconds. As Richelmi also made the most of a different strategy, he completed the podium as Luiz Razia finished seventh and extended his championship lead over the 13th placed Davide Valsecchi.
Giedo van der Garde kept the lead as the red lights went out, with Dutch compatriot Nigel Melker seizing second from Leimer at Turn 4; as the leader soon dropped back, Melker took the top position but was then overhauled by Leimer. Amongst the battling, Cecotto posted the fastest lap on Slicks, prompting pit-stops for everybody else.
Once the rest of the field disappeared in front of him, Cecotto found himself with a very healthy advantage of 28 seconds. Marcus Ericsson passed Stefano Coletti for seventh, only for Valsecchi to break his front wing as he tried to follow through; the moment was hugely significant for the Italian, who is now 12 points behind in the title battle.
James Calado flew the flag for Britain in eighth place, also sealing pole position for tomorrow, with Max Chilton 14th and Jolyon Palmer ending the race in 18th position.
Sunday’s GP2 Sprint Race starts at 10:35am local time (BST +1)