GP2: Isport and Caterham enjoy top weekend in Abu Dhabi
Norfolk's GP2 teams showed some cracking form at the year-ending Abu Dhabi meeting this weekend.
Hingham's Caterham Team Air Asia led the way in Saturday's 31-lap feature race as Luiz Razia came home second behind Racing Engineering's Fabio Leimer, with Carleton Rode's Isport duo of Marcus Ericsson and Tom Dillmann fourth and sixth respectively.
Isport had an even better time of it in Sunday's 22-lap sprint race, as the Swede and Frenchman filled the podium behind the Group Lotus-backed ART of GP3 runner-up James Calado to mop up an excellent end to 2011 – and ideally set up next year, when one extended GP2 Main Series will replace the double bill of past seasons with a shorter Main and Asia Series.
'After a bad qualifying, Marcus made a great recovery throughout the weekend and drove two strong races in good preparation for next year,' said Isport chief engineer Gavin Bickerton.
'Tom again showed great potential and completed a good, solid job and maintained a good race pace to finish equal top rookie, but just lost out to Calado on countback.'
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Razia had to settle for eighth in race two – a drive-through penalty scuppering his race – while his Hingham team-mate Alexander Rossi pipped him a place up the road, topping his Saturday 13th.
However, with a race win and pole position coming in their debut season, there is plenty to smile about at Norfolk's newest GP2 outfit.
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'I truly believe Luiz had the car to win the race today,' said Caterham team manager Phill Spencer. 'He had fastest lap several times but these things happen.
'I am really pleased with the team's performance this season. We have another trophy to take home so congratulations to the whole team and the drivers. It has been one tough season – as I have said before we have had our highs and our lows but I believe we will come back stronger next year.'
Esteban Guti�rrez took a race-two fifth for Lotus ART, while Griston's Super Nova peaked at 11th – in race one with Giacomo Ricci and the following day's sprint race with Fabio Onidi.