Karthikeyan race to A1GP record books

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{image-narain jpg_16122007.jpg www.oneindia.com}Zhuhai (China), Dec 16: Narain Karthikeyan set the track on fire to create motor racing history as Team India grabbed their first ever victory in A1GP World Cup of Motorsports after winning the Feature Race here today.

Karthikeyan recorded a time of 1:08:30.759 to finish 0.502 seconds ahead of Jonny Reid of New Zealand. With this victory, India became the 14th nation to win in the A1GP. ''This has come as a much deserved victory for the team and is good for my confidence. The team has been working really hard at pit stop practices and they've done a really good job this weekend.

''We had excellent pit stops that really paid off and contributed to our victory. This shows that what really counts is great team work. It is early in the season and we have already secured points and now have a win,'' an ecstatic Karthikeyan said after the victory.

''I look forward to racing the rest of the season and bringing home more victories.'' Karthikeyan, who started third in the grid, overtook Portugal on lap 16, and grabbed the lead on lap 29 when Neel Jani of Switzerland developed a tyre problem.

The Indian suffered a scare when Pakistan stole the lead for a brief period before Karthikeyan regained the top spot.

Jonny Reid made a late assault in the closing stages to bring the lead down to less than half a second but Karthikeyan held his own to emerge a deserving champion.

Karthikeyan recorded his fastest lap in 1:25.183 seconds on lap 28 with a top speed of 262.8 Kph.

A1 Team India now has 27 points and occupies the 10th position out of the 22 nations who are vying for the A1GP World Cup of Motorsport.

UNI

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