Sports Reporter

It was just three tenths of a second that separated Narain from a podium finish `We could have finished third because we had the pace' Narain said there were also some under-steer problems with the car. It was just three tenths of a second that separated Narain from a podium finish 'We could have finished third because we had the pace' Narain said there were also some under-steer problems with the car

Coimbatore: A1 Team India signed off in style with a creditable fourth place finish in the A1GP season finale at the Brands Hatch circuit in the United Kingdom on Sunday.

Narain Karthikeyan of Coimbatore, who was behind the wheel for the team, drove a fantastic feature race to take the car from seventh to fourth and secure his team's best ever finish.

Good start

Seventh on the grid, Narain enjoyed a good start off the line and was quickly running alongside the Dutch and Irish cars into the first corner. But as the cars entered the narrow right hand bend, Narain was cramped for room and had to slot in behind, in seventh place.

The team chose to make a mandatory pit stop at this stage. The move paid off as several other teams were caught out by a safety car period, which closed up the field. And, when the rest pitted, Narain came out fourth just behind Team Italy. It was just three tenths of a second that separated Narain from a podium finish.

Italy is under investigation for pitting after the safety car period had been called.

Almost there

Earlier, the Williams F1 Test driver finished seventh in the Sprint race, just one place out of points.

Narain was pleased with the seven points but frustrated to have missed out on the podium. "We could have finished third because we had the pace. There was also some controversy as to whether Italy pitted after the safety car period, which is against the rules. But, since no action was taken we had to be happy with the fourth place."

Decent result

He said there were also some under-steer problems with the car, which made it difficult for him to stay close. "Nevertheless, it was a decent result. And, that's good for the future as well."

The A1 Team India car will now be rigorously tested to ensure it is in the best possible condition for the forthcoming season. It will not be on track until the collective test on August 28 and 29. The next season's opener will be held at the Zandvoort Circuit Park in the Netherlands on September 30.

Final points standings (Top five & A1 Team India): 1. Germany 128 pts; 2. New Zealand 93, 3. Great Britain 92, 4. France 67, 5. Netherlands 57. (India, on 13 pts, finished 16th).

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