TEAM NEWS: Ultimate Salvage a Point from Tough Weekend
TEAM NEWS: Ultimate Motorsport salvaged a point from a tough race weekend that saw their run of consecutive points finishes finally halted in the fourth round of the Lloyds TSB Insurance British F3 International Series at Snetterton.
The new team, which on Saturday announced plans for a one-off appearance in the F3 Euroseries at next month's French Grand Prix, built on a competitive outing at the last race in Bucharest to claim their seventh consecutive points finish with Michael Devaney's tenth place in the first race of the weekend.
But the run of positive performances, which had seen both cars finish every race entered so far this season, was halted when both Irishman Devaney and Argentine team-mate Esteban Guerrieri were unable to make the finish of the second race and posted the team's first ever race retirements.
Team manager Jonny Ostrowski said: "This weekend certainly a was tough one and while it was a positive that Michael managed to claim a point the inevitable has happened and our run of good reliability has come to an end.
"Michael was able to keep pace with the front-runners in the first race despite aerodynamic damage and that proved we are still going in the right direction as we continue to develop the car with the team at Mygale.
"In the second race Michael had a front flap failure and then after going out again he sustained a slow puncture which caused him to retire from the race. Esteban had a handling problem, the cause of which is still to be discovered.
"We will look at the data from Esteban's car to fully understand the problems we had and then look forward to what will be a busy month with the next race at Monza and our debut in the F3 Euroseries on the F1 support bill at Magny-Cours the following week."
Devaney climbed from 13th on the grid to finish 10th in a relatively uneventful first race while Guerrieri made good progress as he climbed up to 14th place from 18th on the grid in the opener.
The second race promised an even better performance with both cars starting from higher up on the grid in 12th and 17th places, but both suffered problems from the start and after dropping back they were eventually forced to retire.
Devaney said: "The first race was good, we scored points again and we were able to keep the pace, which is encouraging. We made a good start but after the first corner there was a lot of dust in the air and you couldn't see anything. Mansell got past me and then I hit the kerbs pretty hard on lap two and the bargeboard broke but we still were able to keep up with the cars in front. It was a shame we could not continue that performance in the second race."
Guerrieri said: "We were playing catch-up all weekend after chasing a problem on the car on Friday. The car was ok in the first race and we were able to make up a few places and get it to the finish. But in the second race the car was difficult to drive. It was pulling to the left and we could not find the problem during the race so we had to retire."