Porsche Supercup: Top-ten finish for Al Faisal
For the second successive time in the 2019 Porsche Mobil 1 Supercup season, Al Faisal al Zubair managed to earn a top-ten overall finish as the Omani secured points in the second round on Monaco’s street circuit on Sunday.
In what looked to be a processional race, which ended with a couple of yellow flag incidents and debris on the narrow track, the young BWT Lechner Racing Team driver began the race in 11th, slipped to 12th on the opening lap, and then held his composure through two-race stoppages to finish in the top-ten.
His teammate and defending champion Michael Ammermüller celebrated his 71st Porsche Supercup race with victory to take the championship lead into the four-week break.
Dane Mikkel Pedersen and Dutchman Larry ten Voorde finished second and third on the 3.337km circuit.
Speaking after the race, Al Faisal said, “A bit disappointed with tenth spot because I knew my pace had been faster in practice with P7. I think we had room to get a good result.
“Considering we were in a new car, which I had never driven it before qualifying, a P10 is not bad. Got crucial and good points for the championship.”
Al Faisal added, “The fact that I was driving a new car was in the back of my mind throughout the race . And in Monaco, to be honest, you cannot really overtake. The drivers in the front are also experienced, so you either gain a position at the start or you just wait until someone makes a mistake. It is not an enjoyable race. But two top-ten finish to start the championship is not so bad.”
Ammermüller led from lights out at the start of the 16-lap morning race from Pedersen and ten Voorde. Al Faisal lined up in 11th after his dramatic start to the weekend.
The German maintained his advantage and the entire 24-car field survived narrow turn one and the top five held station through the first lap. Al Faisal dropped one place to 12th but continued to pressurise Jaxon Evans to try and regain 11th.
Ammermüller’s lead over Pedersen was 0.991 seconds at the halfway point but the race was yellow-flagged briefly soon afterwards when Michael Verhagen spun and partially blocked the track before regaining his composure to return to the pits and retire.
Al Faisal regained 11th after safety car was brought in during lap ten. Action resumed on lap 12 of 16, but Ammermüller maintained his lead and held on to take the chequered flag and victory for the BWT Lechner Racing Team.
There was a late incident on lap 11 when Joey Mawson was involved in an incident and his retirement lifted Al Faisal into the top-ten in the final classification.
The third round will be held at the Red Bull Circuit in Spielberg, Austria, on June 29.