Last lap drama disappoints as GT Radial Eurasia Motorsport shine in the Dubai E1 Championship
Date posted on December 4, 2020 · Published by eurasiapr
Great race-leading pace illustrated the great strides that the GT Radial Eurasia Motorsport team and e-sports drivers Inigo Anton and Joaquin Garrido had taken since the last round in Shanghai. Ultimately however, today in Dubai, it was another case of what might have been with a best result of fourth to show from the day, following an unfortunate puncture on the last lap.
Round two on the championship in Shanghai could be summarised as ‘difficult’ but round three of Season Zero saw the GT Radial Eurasia Motorsport team right up at the sharp-end of the field in both the 15-minute Sprint and Main races this evening.
“We were much more competitive which is pleasing, and we believe together as a team that two second-place finishes were what we should have achieved today,” stated Eurasia Motorsport Team Principal Mark Goddard. “The last lap puncture was unfortunate as we looked set for a good result but now we look ahead to Imola, a classic circuit that both of our e-sports drivers know so well.”
The team worked hard ahead of the event to hone the cars to suit the UAE 5.3km circuit, with Anton holding the provisional pole before being bumped in the final seconds by championship leader Mikko Nassi. With Garrido lining up 14th, things were looking positive ahead of the 15-minute Sprint event.
The Sprint race unfolded with Anton running second early on behind Naquib Azlan, with a recovering Nassi soon putting the GT Radial driver under pressure and then making a decisive move to take the position and the eventual race win. Anton meanwhile focused on the rear of Azlan’s single seater in the final laps before suffering contact in the battle for position and dropping to fourth position.
The Main race saw the top 12 positions from the Sprint event reversed, giving Garrido the pole position. The star of lap one however was undoubtedly his teammate Anton, vaulting from eighth on the grid to lead the race by the end of the very first lap.
The fairy-tale wasn’t to be for the Filipino youngster though. Despite pulling an impressive four-second margin on the field, he found himself under pressure mid-race as he pitted to switch to medium tyres for the second stint. Exiting the pits behind Nassi in second position, the battle was on. Anton closed the gap initially making best use of the initial pace from his softer compound, but the final laps saw his tyres fall away, putting him under pressure from Ayman Aqeem. Again, lady-luck denied the team with a last lap puncture denying him the runner-up position.
With the 11th place finish and a ninth from Garrido, the GT Radial squad now prepare for a virtual trip to Italy next week as the E1 Championship visits the classic Imola Circuit.
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