2010 Chinese Grand Prix
It was a humid day as usual in China at the Shanghai International Circuit. Qualifying saw Janne Tanskanen again taking advantage of his Nordsjoen Racing machine by taking his second pole of the year in as many races, with Lee Morris finishing off row two for CSG Racing, followed by Agustin Canapino, Kieran Ryan, Nick Rowland and Mark Wicks.
The start saw Tanskanen pull away perfectly, retaining the lead, while Canapino jumped ahead of Morris into the tricky turn one. Just how tricky this corner is was proven straight away, as further down the field, Liam Hatchell ran wide and was nearly sliced up by a Williamson Dynamics car. At the hairpin, Tom Parker cut into the inside of Wayne Mullins and flipped the Draig upside down. Both Synergetics were damaged in the process, forcing them to share pit stops at the end of the lap. Meanwhile, the leading pack remained unchanged.
Christoph Lichtenstein and debutant Chris Williamson (standing in for Mark Fuller in the ST Racing) were soon joined by Leontin Nemet of Red Archer VRT. The latter lost out, after locking brakes into the second-last corner and cutting across the grass on the inside. Later on, Wicks caught a kerb as he approached turn nine, allowing Nemet to grab a hold of the Woods's diffuser and pull himself to the inside. Wicks defended well, going back around the outside and on the inside of the winding turn ten. However, it was all lost soon after, with Ryan tapping his team-mate into a slow spin at the hairpin. Emanuel Gaczella - ever the opportunist - overtook them both after Ryan waited for Wicks to allow him back into his position. However, a hint of oversteer out of turn five for the Oz Racing driver gave him a pleasant view of both Woods cars stealing his hard-earned position.
Williamson took one step forward and two steps back, overtaking Lichtenstein into the hairpin, until he ran wide off the final turn and lost places to both the Yellowbirds GP car and the Constant Racing car of Mark Stanton. At the front, Canapino pressured Tanskanen endlessly, making numerous passing attempts. Brothers David and Mark Stanton experienced opposite fortunes - the former being hit by Williamson Dynamics' debutant Sam Millar, and the latter dispatching Marco Vandenbroek in the final corner.
Gaczella was the first retiree, after he dug his nose into the tyres on the exit of turn fourteen. One of Ryan's attempts to pass Mickael Folcher saw him gain a front left puncture from the Red Archer car, forcing an early pit stop for the Irishman. Chris Williamson's battle with the Yellowbirds cars ended in chaos, with Lichtenstein losing his front wing against the ST Racing's rear wing. Hatchell and Ryan made places from this, the Synergetic dispatching Mark Stanton and Vandenbroek the following lap.
After the first round of pit stops, Augustin Canapino gave Flying Finn Tanskanen an unpleasant surprise, emerging in the lead by less than half a second after the Nordsjoen exited the pit lane. However, the Argentine began to make mistakes ahead of the Finn, allowing him to edge towards taking the lead. Canapino had a problem, ending his lap with a pit stop which allowed Tanskanen to resume the lead once again. A lap later, the ART driver crashed out of the final turn, ending any hopes of a win. Both CSG cars jumped into podium positions as a result.
Hatchell regained yet another of his lost positions with a brave pass on David Stanton into turn one - long overdue after he followed the Nordsjoen for the whole lap previously. The second round of pit stops came soon after. Wicks chased Morris in, and the Woods crew got it perfect and leapfrogged the CSG. A few laps later, Morris left the door open in turn five; team-mate Rowland took advantage, pushing him off the podium.
Kieran Ryan claimed fastest lap of the race in the closing laps, and battled back up to sixth. Folcher sat the Red Archer car onto the fifth spot, as the two CSG's continued their battle for the podium until the final lap. Morris made some good yet messy attempts, but it was team-mate Rowland's day for third place. Wicks grabbed second place in as many years at the Shanghai circuit for Woods - a place of fortune for the man from Kernow.
Janne Tanskanen remained largely unchallenged after Canapino's retirement, claiming his second victory of 2010 and extending his points lead ever more.
2010 Australian Grand Prix
|2010 Chinese Grand Prix
2010 Japanese Grand Prix