Dan Ticktum controlled proceedings in the Formula 2 sprint race win in Monza, leading every lap after taking the lead from second on the grid.
The reason for Ticktum’s stoppage, and whether it might cost him his second with of the season, remains unclear. But he wasn’t the only driver to suffer technical problems during a largely processional Sunday morning race.
Louis Deletraz had taken reverse-grid pole in yesterday’s feature race, with Ticktum lining up alongside him on the front row. Callum Ilott, who had drawn level on points with Robert Shwartzman in the lead of the championship, started in third with Christian Lundgaard fourth.
Ticktum made a rapid getaway, taking the lead smoothly into turn one while Deletraz seemed unable to keep up. Immediately falling into the pack, Deletraz’s tyres began to fade and was unable to stay with the leaders.
Two championship contenders retired with strangely similar faults. Championship contender Yuki Tsunoda was running fourth when his car slowed on lap three. Five laps later Guanyu Zhou, who lost a likely win at the Red Bull Ring to a technical problem earlier this year, also crawled back to the pits with a loss of power. Tsunoda was eventually able to continue, albeit six laps down.
Ilott made a DRS pass on a rapidly fading Deletraz on lap 12 for second, putting him on course to bolster his championship lead, but was still over one-and-a-half seconds back from Ticktum. Lundgaard, Schumacher and Shwartzman behind were in pursuit.
Felipe Drugovich spun out of the race on lap 18, prompting a Virtual Safety Car period which neutralised proceedings. The green flag was shown with two laps to go, giving Ilott the opportunity to pass Lundgaard, which he took.
Behind Ticktum, second place for Ilott means he edged ahead in the championship on 146 points. He has a seven-point lead over Schumacher, who came in fourth behind Lundgaard. Behind Deletraz in fifth came Shwartzman, who has fallen to third in the title chase on 138 points.
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