Palmer aims for a GP2 Italian Job

JPCT-Jolyon Palmer at Spa
JPCT-Jolyon Palmer at Spa

Southwater’s GP2 racer Jolyon Palmer is targeting a race win at Monza after he suffered disappointment at Spa over the weekend, where he had a retirement and a tenth place finish.

The 21-year-old started from fifth on the grid in Saturday’s feature race at the historic Belgian circuit, but saoon found himself relegated to 12th when he and iSport team-mate Marcus Ericcson opted to pit around the same time, causing him to wait his turn.

There was further frustration when the race was halted for almost an hour following a heavy crash by Ocean’s Nigel Melker at Eau Rouge. When the race restarted, Palmer was immediately on the charge, coming back through the field well until an incident at Turn 1 with Arden’s Luiz Razia cut short his race, and denying him the chance of a points finish.

“I got a poor start and lost a couple of positions early on,” said Palmer. “After that I lost out with the pit stops as I had to queue up behind team-mate Marcus Ericcson. I dropped to P12 at the red flag but then was coming back through the pack until Razia chopped me at Turn 1 and ended my race.”

As a result, Palmer had to start Sunday’s sprint race from the back of the grid climbed to tenth, an improvement of 12 places. “I had a great first lap to move up from 22nd to 10th but ran over some debris in the process damaging my front wing and floor, losing a chunk of downforce,” he said. “From there I was doing ok until I made a mistake and lost a place to Fabio Leimer. At the end of the race I was eighth but lost out at the final corner as I went for a move and locked the rear brakes so finished 10th which was disappointing as a top five was possible without the damage.”

Jolyon aims to bounce back during this weekend’s rounds 21 and 22 at Italy’s famous Monza circuit – a track he’s won ot twice before. “Monza is one of my favourite tracks and one I have had success at before with a double win in Formula Two in 2010. I’m confident with the car at the moment and we have been showing good pace everywhere so hopefully at Monza I can take a pole, and winning the Feature Race is my main target.”