Pourchaire runs away with F2 win after hectic race

Formula 2

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Théo Pourchaire emerged victorious from Formula 2’s first race in two months after a scruffy, Safety Car-strewn encounter at Monza.

David Beckmann had taken pole position for the first race following his move to Campos, having been tenth fastest during yesterday’s qualifying session. He had Jüri Vips lined up alongside him on the front row, Dan Ticktum and Pourchaire behind.

Vips made a better start than Beckmann and passed him for the lead into turn one, leaving Beckmann to resist Ticktum for second place. Turn one proved eventful again on only the second lap, when the duelling Ticktum and Pourchaire went too deep into the corner and the Carlin driver was collected by Felipe Drugovich as he rejoined. That sent Ticktum’s car spinning to a stop, his race over.

The Safety Car was summoned for the first time. Meanwhile Ralph Boschung was shown the black and orange flag for front wing damage and pitted at the start of lap five, just as the race was restarting. The timing of the pit stop later attracted the attention of the stewards.

Vips maintained his lead while Liam Lawson challenged Pourchaire for second. The ART driver bottled him up at the exit of the corner and Lawson clipped the back of his car, resulting in front wing damage and a trip to the pits for him, too.

Felipe Drugovich went off at Ascari shortly after the restart, prompting a two-lap virtual safety car period. Racing restarted on lap seven and Robert Shwartzman made an ambitious lunge on team mate Oscar Piastri at Lesmo two, forcing his Prema team mate into the gravel, following which he lost a further place to Roy Nissany.

Nissany spun that place away – and all the others – at the exit of Ascari on lap 11, prompting another Safety Car period. Meanwhile the stewards announced Shwartzman would receive a five-second time penalty for driving off-track at the start of the race to gain places.

Second-placed Pourchaire got the better of Vips on the lap 15 restart and passed him for the lead with a late swerve to the inside at the Rettifilio chicane, feeding Vips back into Guanyu Zhou’s reach. Pourchaire looked untouchable, taking a string of fastest laps while Vips’ bad day turned worse as he locked up into turn one on the following lap and was forced to use the escape road to rejoin, dropping him further down the order to an eventual eighth.

On lap 19 of the expected 21 in the sprint race, yellow flags had to be brought out due to Lirim Zendeli stopping at the side of the track, effectively stopping racing for the whole of sector two.

Pourchaire, meanwhile, held his lead to the end and crossed the line with Zhou and Shwartzman behind. The Prema driver’s penalty dropped him out of the podium places, however, promoting Christian Lundgaard, who worked his way forward superbly from 19th on the grid.

Piastri inherited fourth, reducing his loss to Zhou in the championship, leaving the pair separated by five points. Shwartzman fell to sixth behind Lawson, followed by Bent Viscaal and Vips. Beckmann finished 10th after starting at the front, thereby earning himself pole position for this afternoon’s second feature race.

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Formula 2 Italy race one results

PositionCarDriver
110Theo Pourchaire
23Guanyu Zhou
39Christian Lundgaard
42Oscar Piastri
57Liam Lawson
61Robert Shwartzman
724Bent Viscaal
88Juri Vips
96Jehan Daruvala
1020David Beckmann
1117Marcus Armstrong
1222Jake Hughes
1323Alessio Deledda
1421Ralph Boschung
1512Lirim Zendeli
DNF25Marino Sato
DNF11Richard Verschoor
DNF16Roy Nissany
DNF15Guilherme Samaia
DNF4Felipe Drugovich
DNF14Enzo Fittipaldi
DNF5Dan Ticktum

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Hazel Southwell
Hazel is a freelance journalist who roams the paddocks of Formula E, covering the technical and emotional elements of electric racing. Usually found at...

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5 comments on “Pourchaire runs away with F2 win after hectic race”

  1. I hope seeing him soon in F1. Maybe not next year but in 2023. He has not always been there in the top 5 but winning ADAC F4 in his first year, finishing P2 in F3 next year and now he already has 2 wins and is p6 in the standings. He is still 18 years old.

    1. Exactly. He should have some time to develop and get ready.

  2. Yeah, he’s definitely not ready for F1 is he?

  3. I know money (Zhou) or politics (De Vries) will likely win out but come on Alfa…you know Theo has a much higher ceiling than those two. Invest in your future now.

    To me, making the move for 2022 is actually an advantage because of the regulations. Sure, Theo is learning a new car but the other drivers (and teams) will be learning how these cars handle as well. I think it would ease the transition and make him more competitive from the start.

  4. I hope F1 drivers took note of Shwartzman’s penalty. Its not at all unusual to see drivers using that bit of Monza’s unusually wide start/ finish straight on the opening lap. You would expect consistency.

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