Speaking ahead of the Sprint Race, Mercedes junior Frederik Vesti believed it would be decided on the final lap around Baku, but I don’t think he even could predict what happened. Throwing caution to the wind late on, the ART Grand Prix driver charged his way to the front and to his first victory in Formula 2.
Having led the majority of the race, Jehan Daurvala had to settle for second after three safety cars in the second half of the race wiped away his advantage. Whilst Liam Lawson, demonstrated Baku’s overtaking capabilities as he carved his way through from P9 to get the final podium spot.
Hauger was the first to bring out the safety car as he tried to make a move past Pourchaire into Turn 3, but went straight into the barrier after locking up. Once we was racing again, it didn’t last long as Vips HiTech was cut off by Enzo Fittipaldi and was unable to turn left, sending the duo into the run off area at Turn 2.
Leaving it late on the restart, Daruvala locked up leaving the door wide open for Vesti to storm past the PREMA and up into the lead. Lawson then made his way past Drugovich, and set his sights on Verschoor ahead for P3, unfortunately for the Trident driver he went in to deep at Turn 7 and planted himself in the barriers bringing out the Safety Car.
The full top 10 are- P1: Vesti, P2: Daruvala, P3: Lawson, P4: Armstrong, P5: Drugovich, P6: Sargeant, P7: Pourchaire, P8: Iwasa, P9: Hughes and P10: Nissany.
Dennis Hauger claimed his first F2 Feature Race win after a tense battle with Juri Vips, which saw the Estonian driver crash out of the race. The pair were battling sector by sector in the closing stages and with just over five minuted remaining, the Hitech GP man clipped the wall in the castle section.
Logan Sargeant completed a measured drive to take second, whilst our Championship leader, Felipe Drugovich extended his points advantage finishing third.
Contact between Amaury Cordeel and Olli Caldwell at Turn 4 brought out the Safety Car early on. Racing then resumed on Lap 5, and Marcus Armstrong was immediately on the attack for P2.
The Safety car was then back out on Lap 12 following an incident between Roy Nissany and Cem Bolukbasi – the Charouz Racing driver went into Turn 2 but on the exit the pair made wheel to wheel contact which saw both drivers go into the wall.
Back to back fastest laps for Vips on Lap 19 and 20 but couldn’t quite break Hauger’s pursuit. Vips then clipped the wall with 5 minutes remaining and the frustration was clear on the Estonian’s face when he got out the car. The race finished under the Safety Car due to the HiTech car still being on track and debris.
The top 10 were: P1: Hauger, P2: Sargeant, P3: Drugovich, P4: Daruvala, P5: Verschoor, P6: Fittipaldi, P7: Vesti, P8: Sato, P9: Boschung and P10: Hughes.
We haven’t got that long to wait until we see F2 cars back on track, we have just under 3 weeks and we will be at Silverstone for Round 7 which marks the halfway mark in the championship!