• GP2, Italian Grand Prix, Race 2

Vietoris resists for sprint victory

ESPNF1 Staff
September 11, 2011
Christian Vietoris tackles the first chicane on his way to victory © Sutton Images
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Christian Vietoris headed a group of five cars separated by four seconds to win the sprint race at Monza.

Vietoris made a good start to beat pole sitter Jules Bianchi in to turn one, and Fabio Leimer also got the better of Bianchi to secure second, just 0.7s behind. Bianchi held on to third despite late pressure from Sam Bird, but it was Luca Filippi who took second in the championship with fifth place and a bonus point for the fastest lap.

Charles Pic, who had also been in with a chance of second in the standings, crashed out after contact with Romain Grosjean at the first chicane. Grosjean was required to pit after damage to the rear of his car and finished two laps down.

The leading five were closely matched throughout, with Vietoris having to withstand the close attentions of Leimer in the first half of the race. As it wore on though, the closest battle was for third place; Bird started putting pressure on Bianchi but was never quite close enough to make a pass, while Filippi fell away after missing turn one with five laps to go, but then set the fastest lap to show his raw pace and secure the point that would give him the title, before cruising up to the back of Bird who defended well to the line.

There was more overtaking action in the midfield, where Adam Carroll went bakwards after a promising start. Having run fifth early on, he lost out to Filippi, and then Esteban Gutierrez for sixth, before being passed by Dani Clos and Marcus Ericsson on consecutive laps to drop out of the points, and later Luis Razia and Paul Varhaug in to the Roggia chicane.

The potential for a late-race safety car came when Davide Valsecchi crashed out after running wide at Parabolica, but his car came to rest safely on the outside of the circuit.

In the battle for team points, Gierdo van der Garde could only finish 13th, but a lack of points from either Barwa Addax or DAMS drivers meant that it was Barwa that was crowned GP2 Series champions.