Glock wins GP2 finale, title
Timo Glock claimed the GP2 championship in perfect style by dominating the final race of the season at the Circuit Ricardo Tormo in Valencia, controlling the pace from the start to win from local drivers Javier Villa and Andy Soucek.
With the title all but mathematically done the pressure was off the German, who responded with a storming start before walking away into the distance, slowing slightly in the closing laps to take the checkered flag by 5.4 seconds.
Villa started the second race from his familiar pole position, but when the lights went out Glock easily overtook his fellow front row starter to lead the field into the first turn, while behind the pair Soucek moved left from third on the grid to cover Borja Garcia, handing a clean run up the right hand side of the long straight to Marcos Martinez, who started like a rocket to put himself third position at the first corner.
Behind them the Campos pairing of Giorgio Pantano and Vitaly Petrov blew past Kazuki Nakajima to put themselves up to sixth and seventh respectively, while Luca Filippi had the best start of all to move up from 18th to 9th behind the Japanese driver as he looked to defend his third place in the championship from Pantano, who was only one point behind in the standings going into the final race.
Another driver who was pushing for all he was worth was Lucas di Grassi, whose title challenge was in need of a miracle: the Brazilian was slicing through the field, more in hope than expectation, but nevertheless from 22nd on the grid he was up to 13th and looking for any chances that could come his way. Unfortunately for di Grassi he was now on the tail of Glock's teammate Andi Zuber, who was clearly under instructions not to let the ART driver through.
Back at the front Glock was setting fastest lap after fastest lap in an attempt to shake off the attention of Villa, who doggedly clung on for as long as he could, but it was to no avail: the German was just too fast, and he had soon built up an unassailable lead. The Spaniard's teammate was certainly unable to stay with the leading drivers: on the second lap he ran wide at the last corner and dropped from fourth to fourteenth, and a few corners later he was stuck in a three into one corner doesn't fit situation and was squeezed off and into last place
Further back, however, Petrov was pushing just a little too hard behind his teammate, and eventually paid the price: on lap 20 the Russian ran wide through the gravel at the back of the circuit and fell to 8th place, handing a vital point to Filippi, who was having the battle of his life holding back Nakajima.
But when the checkered flag fell it was Glock, pumping his hands manically in the air, who was first across the line, ahead of Villa, Soucek, Garcia, Pantano and Filippi, who held off race long pressure from Nakajima to claim the point for sixth, with Glock taking the fastest lap along the way. The result meant that the German could relax at last, secure in the knowledge that he had held on to win the title ahead of di Grassi (who couldn't find a way by Zuber), Pantano (who took third in the final race by dint of a greater number of wins than his countryman) and Filippi, while also helping iSport International claim their first teams championship, ahead of ART, Campos Grand Prix and Super Nova International.
Pos Driver Team Time/Behind
1. T. Glock iSport International 40:29.814
2. J. Villa Racing Engineering +5.474
3. A. Soucek DPR +7.099
4. B. Garcia Durango +7.630
5. G. Pantano Campos Grand Prix +16.595
6. L. Filippi Super Nova International +18.333
7. K. Nakajima DAMS +18.565
8. V. Petrov Campos Grand Prix +19.868
9. M. Conway Super Nova International +22.933
10. F. Albuquerque Arden International +24.898
11. H. Tung BCN Competicion +30.748
12. A. Zuber iSport International +31.507
13. L. Di Grassi ART Grand Prix +32.205
14. B. Senna Arden International +32.392
15. A. Carroll FMS International +43.618
16. K. Hirate Trident Racing +44.775
17. R. Rodriguez Minardi Piquet Sports +46.279
18. A. Negrao Minardi Piquet Sports +52.033
19. S. Hernandez Trident Racing +52.612
20. M. Aleshin ART Grand Prix +53.348
21. N. Lapierre DAMS +70.578
22. M. Martinez Racing Engineering +2 laps
M. Niemela BCN Competicion 20 laps
K. Chandhok Durango 20 laps
C. Bakkerud DPR 9 laps
J. Tahinci FMS International 0 laps
Fastest lap: Glock, 1:22.313 on lap 4