MISFORTUNE CAUSES JORDAN KING TO LEAVE GERMANY WITHOUT POINTS
Date: 01 / 08 / 2016
Off the back of two sprint race wins in as many races, Jordan King’s hopes for another trophy laden weekend were high in Hockenheim. Unfortunately, events outside his control led to a pair of unrewarding races.
Having qualified eighth for the feature race, just 0.35 seconds off pole, King made a strong start by passing Pierre Gasly. But on Lap 6 as he turned into the hairpin he was hit by Artem Markelov who misjudged his braking and slammed into the Racing Engineering car. This cost the Briton several places and, following a pitstop on Lap 8, he was down in 18th place with a lot of work to do. By Lap 15 he was up to 14th and closing in on Oliver Rowland but, a few laps later, Luca Ghiotto managed to slice one of his rear tyres and he was back in the pits with a puncture. Returning to the track in 18th again there were only sufficient laps left for Jordan to pass a couple more cars and cross the line in 16th.
A post-race penalty for Gasly meant King was promoted to P15 on Sunday’s grid, but a mammoth task still lay ahead. He managed to pass Nicholas Lafiti at the start but ran wide in Turn 1 and, come Lap 2, was down to 16th. Then the Virtual Safety Car came into effect and he was promoted to 14th before sticking it down the side of Mitch Evans and seizing 13th. His next target was Gasly. The retirement of Antonio Giovinazzi, which resulted in another Virtual Safety Car period, promoted Jordan to 12th. On Lap 20 King passed Marvin Kirchhofer to take 11th and was closing in on Nobuharu Matsushita. Two laps later he was up to tenth and being chased by Markelov, who had pitted and changed to fresher tyres and although Jordan passed Jimmy Ericsson on Lap 24 he was passed by Markelov to remain tenth. With his tyres now at the end of their life Jordan was unable to gain any more positions and he lost a place on the final lap to cross the finishing line in 11th.
Jordan King: “Ultimately this was a weekend I’d rather forget but I take some solace in the fact that the speed was there and the misfortune was entirely down to outside factors. We qualified in eighth, which doesn’t sound that amazing except we were just three-tenths off pole, the closest I’ve been all season. It illustrates, yet again, just how tight the field is this season. So I was reasonably happy with how I did.
“We were looking strong for a podium in Race 1, certainly a top five finish, but then on Lap 6 Markelov made a mistake and hit me at the hairpin, and I had to pit. Later on I got a puncture, it’s like nothing went right. Both incidents were out of my control.
“In Race 2 we knew we had good pace again but passing cars wasn’t easy. I overtook some cars but having used an extra set in Race 1 because of the puncture I didn’t have any option tyres left, which hurt the performance.
“Now we start the August break, which I’ll spend training, doing simulator work in Spain, and a spot of holiday with friends. However Belgium isn’t far away, the end of August will arrive soon enough and I’ll be hoping for a return to the points then.”