Lada Sport’s disappointing weekend
"It was very disappointing missing the first races of the year"
The first racing weekend of the season, at Monza, turned to be very disappointing for the LADA Sport Lukoil team.
Both their Granta cars were massively damaged during Saturday’s qualifying session, when Aleksei Dudukalo missed the braking point at the first chicane and t-boned the sister car of James Thompson.
Because the latter had set a time that allowed him to take part in the Q2 part of the session, the team frantically tried to repair his car. Thompson rejoined and set the ninth fastest lap, although his Granta was clearly out of balance.
Finally team principal Victor Shapovalov decide to withdraw both cars from the event.
“It was very disappointing missing the first races of the year, particularly after a solid qualifying. But safety comes first and we did not want to take any risks. The sort of repairs that are needed can only take place back at base in Magny-Cours and this is why we took this tough decision. Now our main task is to prepare ourselves for the second round of the championship in Morocco. But we have not left Italy entirely empty-handed. We showed some very good speed in Monza, particularly in the fast first sector of the circuit, which requires a good top speed and excellent performance from the engine. We were able to fight for fourth and fifth places on the grid but we just got unlucky with the accident. This is motorsport and these things happen; now we just focus on getting everything ready for the second round,” Shapovalov explained.
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