Saturday Qualifying One
Best time: 1:24.832
Qualifying Position: P11
Saturday Race One
Best time: 1:26.189
Finish position: Classified P17 following incident on final lap
Sunday Qualifying Two
Best time: 1:24.478
Qualifying Position: P11
Sunday Race Two
Best time: 1:25.745
Finish position: P5
An eventful weekend in Moscow ended with a positive result for Alexander Rossi of Arden Caterham at the first round of the Renault 3.5 series to be held in Russia. Bad luck dominated Saturday’s results for the American driver with red flags interrupting what could have been a potentially successful qualifying session, and a last lap incident on the final corner seeing Alexander finish 17th, despite running P8 for most of race one.
On Sunday Alexander's luck turned, and while high qualifying positions still remained elusive, Alexander drove a fantastic race to rise from P11 to P5, bringing home 10 vauluable points for the team and ending the weekend in Russia on a high.
Alexander Rossi, Car No 25: “Friday started off on a good note in FP1 where I was running high up early on, and for FP2 we continued to develop the car in a positive direction. As it's such a new circuit the grip evolution was very high so we used the practice sessions to work on setup options that would allow us to take advantage of that evolution.
″The times we ran on Friday gave us reason to be positive about qualifying but unfortunately a red flag on my quickest lap meant I had to abort that run. I had been as high as fifth before that lap but the red flag meant I didn't get another lap in and started 11th. In the first race I had made my way up to 8th but again encountered a bit more bad luck when I was hit on the final lap and finally finished where I'd started in 11th.
“For race two I again started in P11 after qualifying and then fcused on ending the weekend with as strong a race performance as possible. I managed to avoid the mess on the first lap and after a solid race ended in P5 which is very positive for the whole team.
“I want to thank everyone in Arden Caterham for doing such a fantastic job on the pitstops and for making exactly the right call on strategy. Finishing fifth is a good reward and puts the team on a high as we head towards a break of just over a month until the next race. We'll keep working as hard as ever in the time between races and make sure we come back and tackle the second half of the season in a very positive manner.″
Julian Rouse, Sporting Director Arden Caterham: “Friday free practice was good. Obviously we were learning a new circuit, but we were strong in both sessions and it was probably our most successful Friday so far this season, running within the top eight with both cars for the majority of the time.
“Saturday’s qualifying was looking equally competitive for us. We were happy with the setup of the car and felt we made a reasonable step forward after the Nurburgring rounds, but Alexander was particularly unlucky during the session when a red flag meant we had to abort his best lap. Despite that we knew he was much quicker than his qualifying time suggested and he proved that in the race, moving up to eighth after overtaking several cars. His bad luck then struck again and contact on the final lap pushed him back to 11th.
“Moving to Sunday, qualifying was disappointing as we couldn’t get the car working quite as well as we wanted to. We made a few changes to the car for the race and it seemed to work for Alexander as he did a great job to push through the field and finish the weekend fifth.
″That's a good way to conclude our first weekend in Russia. The mechanics performed very well in the stops and it looks like we've made good progress on strategy and setups. All in all this has been a positive race weekend for the whole team and I’m happy we ended in such a strong position.”
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