Pic’s Promising Pace Goes Unrewarded After Trying Silverstone Weekend
By Mel Fabrikant Monday, July 07 2014 @ 03:04 PM EDT
After struggling during free practice, Arthur rebounded in the dying minutes of an extremely close qualifying session to snatch 12th, finishing a mere half-second off pole position. Using Pirelli’s medium compound tyres, Pic suffered considerable wheelspin at the beginning of Saturday’s Feature Race, dropping Campos’ 22-year-old two positions on the opening lap.
Problems with high levels of front tyre degradation necessitated an earlier-than-planned mandatory pit-stop for Arthur when the window opened on lap six. Resuming on the orange-marked hard rubber, Pic steadily moved through the field while demonstrating consistent pace throughout his slightly elongated second stint.
Once the entire field's obligatory pit-stops were completed with 10 laps remaining, Arthur – now back in 12th – began applying pressure to Adrian Quaife-Hobbs. Despite passing the Briton in an inspired last-lap move through Copse, it proved too late for Pic in his chase for the final point, eventually coming home 11th.
Lining up in the same spot for Sunday’s Sprint Race, another problematic getaway – once again due to too much wheelspin – ensured Pic would struggle to hold onto his position. Dropping to 15th behind Takuya Izawa, the Frenchman did his utmost to pass ART’s Japanese driver, although excessive high-speed understeer prevented him from staying close enough to the car ahead.
The Campos ace nonetheless seized his chance at turn four – The Loop – with three laps remaining. Despite Pic holding the inside line, Izawa unexpectedly cut across his rival, making contact inevitable. Subsequent front wing loss forced Arthur to retire, while Race Control laid the blame squarely at the Japanese’s door, giving Izawa a five-place grid penalty for the next GP2 Series round in Germany.
Arthur Pic: “Of course, I am slightly disappointed with how things went this weekend. Throughout a season you’ll always experience highs and lows, yet there’s still six rounds remaining. I prefer to focus on the positives we can take from Silverstone, namely our race pace, which was once again quite strong.
“Despite quickly addressing set-up issues after a difficult free practice, I began qualifying in what felt like a completely different car. Therefore, I was quite satisfied to clinch 12th on my final run.
“We were pretty much on the pace thereafter, although both starts cost us dearly. They’re quite tricky to get right because you have to tread a thin line between not stalling and suffering from too much wheelspin. Of course, the more experience you have, the better you become. I also suffered from rapid degradation with the front tyres on Saturday, which prompted us to bring our pit-stop forward. It proved to be a good decision, but in hindsight we should have started on the harder compound.
“As for my collision with Izawa, I was very surprised to see him attempt to take the usual line as I clearly held the inside. Anyway, it’s a racing incident and I’m now focusing on bouncing back at the next round.”
Indeed, Pic has an opportunity to make amends for his British misfortune in just under two weeks (July 18-20) with round six at Hockenheim.
For more information on Arthur Pic please visit www.arthurpic.com