Hulkenberg tops final practice in Eastern Creek

A1 Team Australia has solved its set up problems of yesterday, making good headway towards a strong home performance in the last official practice session for the A1GP Sydney, Australia. The team moved up from twelfth place on the timing sheet yesterday to sixth place this morning, despite an earlier hiccup when refueling which saw the nozzle burst and driver, Karl Reindler sprayed with fuel.

A1 Team Germany took over from New Zealand at the top of the time sheets with Great Britain slotting into second place ahead of New Zealand. A1 Team Great Britain were delighted with this result having made suspension changes over night which seemed to do the trick, giving them the biggest jump up the time sheets from 13th place yesterday afternoon to second today.

The same could not be said for Italy and Malaysia as they dropped down to 20th and 21st respectively. A1 Team Malaysia’s driver, Alex Yoong, was very frustrated saying that the car seemed to have the wrong set up for the track. On top of this, the master switch failed and the electronics cut out.

With the A1GP engines having reached the 250,000 kilometer mark this weekend after 18 months of racing, many of the teams are changing them. New Zealand was due to change their engine at the end of this race meeting but in fact changed it over night. Canada also has a new engine this weekend, but installed it before the start of yesterday’s practice sessions. The life of an A1GP engine is 3,500km, so the teams make this change once a year – usually mid-season.

The teams now have to decide on their final set up before qualifying for the Sprint race begins at 14.15 this afternoon. Qualifying consists of four 15 minute sessions with a five minute break between each. Only one driver per A1 Team is allowed to take part in Qualifying and that driver must have completed at least three timed laps in an Official Practice session. Each driver is limited to three laps – effectively one “flying lap" – per session and must record at least two times, an aggregate of which will determine that A1 Team’s position on the grid for Sunday’s Sprint race. The grid for the Feature race will be determined by the outcome of the Sprint race.

1 7 Nico HÃœLKENBERG GERMANY 1:21.080 –
2 8 Robbie KERR GREAT BRITAIN 1:21.284 +0.204
3 19 Jonny REID NEW ZEALAND 1:21.293 +0.213
4 6 Loic DUVAL FRANCE 1:21.343 +0.263
5 17 Salvador DURAN MEXICO 1:21.480 +0.400
6 1 Karl REINDLER AUSTRALIA 1:21.590 +0.510
7 22 Alan VAN DER MERWE SOUTH AFRICA 1:21.593 +0.513
8 23 Sebastien BUEMI SWITZERLAND 1:21.706 +0.626
9 18 Jeroen BLEEKEMOLEN NETHERLANDS 1:21.764 +0.684
10 21 Christian MURCHISON SINGAPORE 1:21.892 +0.812
11 25 Philip GIEBLER USA 1:21.895 +0.815
12 3 James HINCHCLIFFE CANADA 1:22.023 +0.943
13 5 Tomas ENGE CZECH REPUBLIC 1:22.069 +0.989
14 2 Tuka ROCHA BRAZIL 1:22.116 +1.036
15 12 Richard LYONS IRELAND 1:22.153 +1.073
16 10 Parthiva SURESHWAREN INDIA 1:22.162 +1.082
17 15 Alex KHATEEB LEBANON 1:22.206 +1.126
18 4 Ho-Pin TUNG CHINA 1:22.249 +1.169
19 11 Ananda MIKOLA INDONESIA 1:22.413 +1.333
20 13 Enrico TOCCACELO ITALY 1:22.899 +1.819
21 16 Alex YOONG MALAYSIA 1:23.061 +1.981
22 20 Nur ALI PAKISTAN 1:23.756 +2.676

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