Perez Storms to Qatar Sprint Win
Starting the second night race of the Qatar weekend from 7th place, Perez stormed into 2nd place – after teammate Vitaly Petrov, who also started the Sprint Race from 6th place – after the very first corner. The very next lap, thanks to a poor corner exit by Petrov, Perez clinched the lead and never let go until the finish line.
“In the beginning, in the first lap, Vitaly had a good pace in the first and the second sectors. But in the third sector, he came a bit slow out of the corner and I got a really good exit and I tried on the first lap and he didn’t push enough to block me,” said Perez after the race.
“Clearly, he didn’t want to make a mistake: we knew it was only the first lap and we didn’t want to crash. Still, I saw the opportunity and I took it. And after that, I tried to manage my tyres because we learnt from yesterday that the tyre degradation is very important here and I could manage very well because I was leading. So, I did what I wanted to do and it worked really well,” added the Barwa Campos driver.
The duo managed to keep their positions unchanged until the chequered flag, giving Barwa Campos their first ever 1-2 finish in the GP2 Series. Third overall was Feature Race winner Nico Hulkenberg, who struggled to overtake Arden International's Edoardo Mortara for most of the race. He eventually managed to get into 3rd place 8 laps until the finish line.
Perez' win on Saturday – corroborated with his impressive 2nd place on Friday – pushed him all the way into 4th place overall, level on points with ART Grand Prix' Hulkenberg. Championship leader Kamui Kobayashi only came 18th overall in the Sprint Race, following his 4th place on Friday.