Chilton wins as Valsecchi becomes GP2 Champion

Chilton wins as Valsecchi becomes GP2 Champion

22 September 2012 – As the sun began to set in Singapore on Saturday, Davide Valsecchi became GP2 Champion for 2012 as he finished in front of title rival Luiz Razia. The penultimate race of the season was won by newly-signed Marussia F1 reserve driver Max Chilton.

The Englishman's win was set up at the start when pole man Luca Filippi bogged down as the lights went out, handing Chilton an easy run to the first corner ahead of Esteban Gutiérrez, Fabio Leimer and Jolyon Palmer, with Valsecchi next across the line and relieved to see the cars of Johnny Cecotto, Filippi and Stefano Coletti between him and his championship nemesis.

Gutiérrez had a look up the inside at Turn 3 but couldn't make it stick, giving Leimer the chance to squeeze by the Mexican at Turn 7; he couldn't make it stick either and that gave Palmer all the space he needed to blast by at the corner before the Safety Car came out to allow the removal of René Binder and Victor Guerin's stricken vehicles, and to give everyone a breather after a frantic first lap.

Chilton easily gapped his rivals at the restart and it was clear that everyone was holding station pending the pit-stops: Filippi and Cecotto were the highest placed drivers to stop when the pit lane opened on Lap 6, putting the fear of being jumped into everyone's hearts. Leimer and Razia came in on the next lap, with the rest of the front runners in over the following two laps; with the stops shaken out Filippi had jumped back up to P3, right on the tails of Chilton and Gutiérrez.

The top three had amazing pace, running like a train away from their main rivals on track as the last few stragglers finally came in for their stops. Leimer was the only other man able to compete on pace, and quickly dispatched Palmer as he looked ahead for a podium finish: his job was made easier when Filippi slowed with a mechanical gremlin, and it was only a matter of time before all of the Italian's good work was in vain.

The Swiss driver finally claimed his scalp on Lap 20, with Valsecchi also looking for a way past his countryman but not wanting to risk too much, as he now had Razia on his tail and hoping for more. Filippi eventually submitted and came into the pits to let his team have a look at the car before returning to the track, unfortunately prompting another Safety Car period a few minutes from the end after finding the barriers at the last corner.

Chilton was happy to claim the win after absorbing everything Gutiérrez had thrown at him, and the pair hugged in Parc Fermé in acknowledgment of an epic battle. Leimer crossed the line a few seconds back, happy with his day's work, ahead of 2012 Series Champion Valsecchi, who was shadowed by his vice champion Razia. Felipe Nasr took advantage of an early stop to jump up to sixth place, just ahead of Marcus Ericsson and Giedo van der Garde, who had a few torrid battles for P7 and P8, while Rio Haryanto and Nathanaël Berthon rounded out the points positions.

Valsecchi was greeted by his team in the pits like a returned hero and they were already wearing his championship shirts as his 241 points cannot be beaten by Razia (214). Gutiérrez will be hoping to hold on for third place tomorrow, on 172 ahead of Chilton on 169 and Calado on 160. DAMS will be hoping to hold on for the teams' title, leading Lotus by just two points (334 to 332), with Arden looking for third place on 218 from Carlin on 207 and Racing Engineering on 202.


Sunday’s Sprint Race starts at 5:10pm local time (BST +7)

related

Comments

Latest News
Full
Compact

  1. Wednesday 13 December 2017

  2. Follow GPUpdate on social media channels 12:20

    Follow GPUpdate on social media channels

    For almost two decades GPUpdate.net has kept the motorsport community updated with the latest news, photos and thoughts from the…

    F1
  3. Video: Latifi on F2 season, 2018 title hopes 10:33

    Video: Latifi on F2 season, 2018 title hopes

    Nicholas Latifi reflects on his 2017 Formula 2 season, which featured one win and nine podiums, and looks ahead to a potential…

    F2
  4. Chilton excited by Carlin IndyCar project 10:04

    Chilton excited by Carlin IndyCar project

    Max Chilton believes that Carlin can emerge as a competitive force in IndyCar in 2018, after confirmation of the team's…

    Indy
  5. 2017 review: Solid Haas scores more points 09:06

    2017 review: Solid Haas scores more points

    GPUpdate.net continues its end-of-season review with Haas, which stabilised as both Romain Grosjean and Kevin Magnussen scored…

    F1
  6. Boullier 'not a fan' of Norris practice runs 08:35

    Boullier 'not a fan' of Norris practice runs

    McLaren Racing Director Eric Boullier says that he is "not a fan" of potentially giving Lando Norris practice outings in 2018…

    F1
  7. Video: Mercedes' Follow the Star - Day 13 05:36

    Video: Mercedes' Follow the Star - Day 13

    Mercedes continues its countdown to Christmas by reflecting on the British Grand Prix, which Lewis Hamilton won for the fourth…

    F1
  8. Tuesday 12 December 2017

  9. 17:02

    Follow us on Instagram for the best photos!

    F1
  10. Carlin enters IndyCar, signs Chilton, Kimball 14:18

    Carlin enters IndyCar, signs Chilton, Kimball

    Carlin has announced its move into the IndyCar series in a full-time capacity for the 2018 season, with Max Chilton and Charlie…

    Indy
  11. Monger eyes return to single-seater racing 12:49

    Monger eyes return to single-seater racing

    Billy Monger says that he hopes to return to single-seater competition in 2018, potentially in British Formula 3, after the FIA…

    Misc
  12. Video: Roborace – Human versus Machine 12:07

    Video: Roborace – Human versus Machine

    Watch as Formula E presenter Nicki Shields takes on DevBot, a test mule for Roborace, the first driverless racing series, at the…

    FE
  13. Dorna confirms supplier for electric series 11:37

    Dorna confirms supplier for electric series

    MotoGP promoter Dorna Sports has announced the supplier for the new FIM Moto-e World Cup electric series, which is set to begin…

    MotoGP
  14. De Vries, Müller to test Audi Formula E car 10:17

    De Vries, Müller to test Audi Formula E car

    Formula 2 driver Nyck de Vries and DTM racer Nico Müller will sample Formula E machinery with Audi in the series…

    FE
  15. Video: Hong Kong FE cinematic highlights 10:02

    Video: Hong Kong FE cinematic highlights

    Watch cinematic highlights from the first two races of the 2017/18 Formula E season, which took place on the streets of Hong…

    FE
  16. 2017 review: McLaren-Honda ends in divorce 09:02

    2017 review: McLaren-Honda ends in divorce

    GPUpdate.net continues its team-by-team review with McLaren, which finally lost patience with Honda, as the marque's revised…

    F1
  17. Williams silent over Kubica/Sirotkin reports 08:28

    Williams silent over Kubica/Sirotkin reports

    Williams is staying silent over reports that Robert Kubica has dropped out of contention for its 2018 race seat, and that Sergey…

    F1
  18. Video: Mercedes' Follow the Star - Day 12 05:48

    Video: Mercedes' Follow the Star - Day 12

    Mercedes continues its countdown to Christmas by looking back at the Austrian Grand Prix, where Valtteri Bottas took pole and…

    F1
  19. Monday 11 December 2017

  20. Video: Mercedes' Follow the Star - Day 11 15:04

    Video: Mercedes' Follow the Star - Day 11

    Mercedes continues its countdown to Christmas by reflecting on the dramatic Azerbaijan Grand Prix, when Lewis Hamilton was…

    F1
  21. Pirelli announces first 2018 compound choices 13:43

    Pirelli announces first 2018 compound choices

    Formula 1 tyre supplier Pirelli has confirmed the compounds that will be used at the opening three Grands Prix of the 2018…

    F1
  22. Porsche outlines plans for early 2019 FE test 13:38

    Porsche outlines plans for early 2019 FE test

    Porsche has revealed that it intends to give its Formula E package its first on-track test in early 2019, ahead of its entry…

    FE
  23. Tost: Kvyat deserves to be in Formula 1 13:33

    Tost: Kvyat deserves to be in Formula 1

    Toro Rosso team boss Franz Tost says that Daniil Kvyat "deserves" to be in Formula 1, despite recent setbacks, and hopes to see…

    F1
  24. Bottas eyes qualifying and consistency gains 12:16

    Bottas eyes qualifying and consistency gains

    Mercedes' Valtteri Bottas has accepted that he needs to improve his one-lap pace, and string a more consistent campaign…

    F1
  25. I was more aggressive in 2017 - Sainz Jr. 10:48

    I was more aggressive in 2017 - Sainz Jr.

    Carlos Sainz Jr. says he adopted a more aggressive stance in Formula 1 in 2017, in order to underline his credentials…

    F1
  26. Video: McLaren presents special Senna car 10:25

    Video: McLaren presents special Senna car

    McLaren presents its new road-legal track car, the McLaren Senna, which features a four-litre twin-turbocharged V8, producing…

    Misc
  27. 2017 review: Sauber builds for the future 09:16

    2017 review: Sauber builds for the future

    GPUpdate.net begins its team-by-team season review with Sauber, which again finished 10th, though this time without the…

    F1
  28. Video: WEC's 2018/19 'Super Season' teaser 05:42

    Video: WEC's 2018/19 'Super Season' teaser

    The World Endurance Championship looks ahead to its 2018/19 'Super Season', which includes two editions of the Le Mans 24 Hours…

    F1
  29. Sunday 10 December 2017

  30. Vettel says Baku was 'worst feeling' of 2017 15:18

    Vettel says Baku was 'worst feeling' of 2017

    Ferrari's Sebastian Vettel says the aftermath of the rancorous Azerbaijan Grand Prix left him with the "worst feeling" of 2017…

    F1
  31. Video: Mercedes' Follow the Star - Day 10 14:22

    Video: Mercedes' Follow the Star - Day 10

    Mercedes continues its countdown to Christmas by reflecting on its 1-2 finish at the Canadian Grand Prix, bouncing back from its…

    F1
  32. Hamilton hopes for competitive McLaren in '18 13:04

    Hamilton hopes for competitive McLaren in '18

    Reigning World Champion Lewis Hamilton says he hopes former team McLaren will be able to compete among the leading group in…

    F1
  33. Video: Rosberg's Deutsche Bahn shoot 11:22

    Video: Rosberg's Deutsche Bahn shoot

    Go behind-the-scenes with 2016 Formula 1 World Champion Nico Rosberg during his recent commercial shoot for Deutsche Bahn in…

    F1
  34. MotoGP review: Márquez hits rivals for six 09:16

    MotoGP review: Márquez hits rivals for six

    Marc Márquez claimed his fourth premier class title in five years, and the sixth championship of his career, as he added more…

    MotoGP
  35. Video: Mercedes reflects on 2017 F1 season 05:48

    Video: Mercedes reflects on 2017 F1 season

    Mercedes reflects on its title-winning 2017 Formula 1 season with a pictorial review, to the words of Rudyard Kipling's 'If…

    F1
  36. Saturday 9 December 2017

  37. Wehrlein: Sauber slide hid personal gains 15:34

    Wehrlein: Sauber slide hid personal gains

    Pascal Wehrlein believes Sauber's regression through the second half of 2017 masked his improvements, as he faces an uncertain…

    F1
  38. Video: Mercedes' Follow the Star - Day 9 13:16

    Video: Mercedes' Follow the Star - Day 9

    Mercedes continues its countdown to Christmas with the latest instalment of its #FollowTheStar series by reflecting on the…

    F1
  39. Social: FIA Prize Giving ceremony in Versailles 11:34

    Social: FIA Prize Giving ceremony in Versailles

    The biggest names in motorsport were in attendance at the Palace of Versailles for the FIA's Prize Giving Ceremony. GPUpdate.net…

    F1
  40. Video: Prize Giving Red Carpet highlights 09:58

    Video: Prize Giving Red Carpet highlights

    Watch highlights from the Red Carpet as leading figures from the world of motorsport attend the FIA's annual Prize Giving…

    F1
  41. Massa takes on FIA role as karting chief 08:36

    Massa takes on FIA role as karting chief

    Felipe Massa has been appointed as the President of the CIK/International Karting Commission, following the annual meeting of…

    F1
  42. 07:30

    Gallery: FIA Prize Giving Ceremony 2017

    F1
  43. Hamilton, Mercedes crowned at FIA Gala 07:29

    Hamilton, Mercedes crowned at FIA Gala

    Lewis Hamilton and Mercedes have been officially crowned Formula 1 World Champions for a fourth time at the FIA's annual Prize…

    F1
  44. Video: Mahindra reflects on Hong Kong 05:36

    Video: Mahindra reflects on Hong Kong

    Mahindra reflects on the opening pair of rounds of the 2017/18 Formula E campaign, after the team moved into the lead of the…

    F1
  45. Friday 8 December 2017

  46. Williams dismisses Rowland's seat talks claim 19:05

    Williams dismisses Rowland's seat talks claim

    Williams has dismissed suggestions made by Formula 2 racer Oliver Rowland that the Briton is in discussions for the team's…

    F1
more news