After suffering a five-place grid penalty following yesterday’s qualifying session, Luca Filippi and Hiroki Yoshimoto started the first race at Malaysia from 10th and 19th respectively. The rain that had been threatening the earlier F1 qualifying session caught the drivers on their first lap and chaos ensued during whih both Filippi and Yoshimoto were taken out of the race.
The race was red-flagged, but the Qi-Meritus.Mahara drivers were both unable to get back in the race.
Luca Filippi commented: “I had a reasonable start, but we had more than our fair share of bad luck. I was not able to avoid the accident which is a real shame because the car was feeling great and the team had done such a good job setting it up. I am really sorry for the guys in the team that we lost an opportunity to score points.”
Hiroki Yoshimoto commented: “I had a super start and I pushed strongly in the first lap to be in front of Vitaly Petrov after overtaking several cars. Then the sky got darker and it started to get wet on the track. As I arrived at where the accident had happened, I was hit from behind and there was nothing I could do. The car just flew after I was hit. I managed to get back to the pits despite the damage and rear tyre puncture. The team fixed the damaged suspension but the car was too badly damaged to continue.”
Peter Thompson, president and team founder, Qi-Meritus.Mahara: “Of course I am disappointed. I had been looking forward to our home race. The team had done a fantastic job to prepare for the race and our cars should have finished in the points. It’s definitely a race to forget with two drivers out after the first lap. Let's hope for the entire team that tomorrow's second race will be better for all at Qi-Meritus.Mahara.”
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