It was the first win in the series for the young French driver. Followed by a fine 5th place finish in the second race, it enabled him to move up from 15th to 7th place in the overall ranking. With 14 points, it was Lotus ART’s best single-meeting total for the season.
Jules Bianchi led the first race from start to finish, from his first pole position of the season, which was his 4th in the championship. Worried by Christian Vietoris, who briefly overtook him as he was coming out of the pits on cold tyres. Jules showed great control in taking command and establishing a definitive gap over his rival. On Sunday, Jules moved up from 8th to 5th place and secured two precious points from the perspective of both championships.
On the heels of his win at Valencia, Esteban Gutierrez had a brilliant race start on Saturday and was in 5th position in the second lap. Unfortunately, he was bumped by a competitor who was penalized for the maneuver which deprived the young Mexican driver of a finish in the points. The next day, he climbed up to 8th place.
“I want to dedicate this win to the entire crew, who never stopped supporting me in the difficult times we have experienced recently. Lotus ART gave me the best conditions to get a pole position by finding a perfect set-up despite unpredictable conditions and in a session where we had to produce an effort from the first flying lap. I wanted to be cautious in the first half of the second race, perhaps too much so, because the podium was certainly within our reach fair and square. But 5th place is a good result to finish up a major weekend and which puts us back in the saddle for both championships.”
“The window for getting a good time in qualifying was only open for a few minutes and it was anything but easy to put everything in place what with the traffic and changing track conditions. 7th position on the grid was a good overall result and I was hoping to convert it into a very good place at the finish line. I had an excellent race start, overtaking several cars, but the timing of our pit stop was not ideal. It’s easy to say in hindsight and there is nothing to regret because that’s racing. After that, a competitor bumped into me, I lost time and one position, and I could not do any better than 10th. The main lesson of the weekend is that I have more and more confidence behind the wheel, that my performances are improving, and we know that we can fight for the lead in every race.”
“For the second time in a row, Lotus ART has taken a GP2 Main Series race and it is a very positive dynamic. Jules had a faultless performance and it is only fair that he should have this first win that calls for others. Esteban was without success but that does not cut into his confidence at all because his potential is enormous. The championship is still young and everything is still in play.”