Felipe Drugovich on track at the Circuit de Barcelona Catalunya during the 2022 Formula 2 round there

Drugovich takes Formula 2 feature race win with skilful tyre management

Formula 2

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Felipe Drugovich has taken a clean sweep of Barcelona Formula 2 wins after a feature race victory from tenth on the grid to extend his championship lead.

Jack Doohan finished second, with Frederik Vesti claiming the final podium position in third.

Jack Doohan had taken pole position, Jüri Vips alongside him on the front row and with Vesti and Jehan Daruvala on the second row. Drugovich, who had struggled in qualifying, started tenth.

Doohan got away with the lead off the line, covering Vips and allowing Vesti to get past into the lead up to turn one, forcing Vips down to third. Logan Sargeant passed Daruvala into turn one but with Daruvala running the alternate strategy, having started on harder tyres.

On lap three, Olli Caldwell and Dennis Hauger made contact after Hauger attempted to pass Caldwell around the outside of turn 14, clipping the Campos’ front wing.

On the fourth lap, Daruvala’s Prema suddenly slowed on the exit of turn five, leaving Ayumu Iwasa with nowhere to go to avoid clipping the back of Daruvala’s car with his own front wing. As Iwasa pitted for repairs, the Safety Car was deployed due to Daruvala’s car being left strange in the middle of turn seven.

Hauger also pitted behind the Safety Car for a new front wing, following the contact with Caldwell, for which Hauger was given a five-second time penalty.

The Safety Car came in on lap six, Doohan moving away in the lead while Felipe Drugovich challenged Sargeant for fourth into turn one. Drugovich was repelled but stayed on the back of Sargeant throughout the lap.

Jüri Vips was the first driver to make a scheduled compulsory pit stop, at the start of lap eight, Jake Hughes following him into the pits. Hughes led the Hitech out, however, after a slow pit stop for Vips that saw his race unravel from then on, a lengthy hard tyre stint ahead of him.

Drugovich stayed out in the lead. Doohan, Vesti and Sargeant had pitted and Drugovich, in clean air, was able to extend a nearly 30-second lead over Doohan by lap 14.

Hauger, who had pitted early following the contact with Caldwell, ran wide at turn eight on lap 16 and through the gravel, ruining the hard tyres he had switched to.

“Yeah, now the tyres are going” said Drugovich, on lap 16, finally being called into the pits by his MP Motorsport team. However, Drugovich stayed out for a further lap before eventually coming in for hard tyres. Drugovich’s stop was relatively slow, putting him back out in ninth place – a net third, behind Doohan and Vesti.

Doohan and Drugovich were able to start moving up the order of drivers on the alternative strategy on lap 20, with Drugovich also passing Vesti as he swept past Hauger on the main straight.

Drugovich was placed under investigation for a pit stop infringement on lap 21, with Vesti and Pourchaire also placed under post-race investigation for other pit lane incidents.

Clement Novalak pitted on lap 24, giving Doohan the true race lead but Marcus Armstrong stayed out, keeping Drugovich back from Doohan. Drugovich passed the Hitech driver – who was attempting to extend a hard tyre stint – at the start of lap 24.

Closing in on Doohan with five-lap fresher tyres, Drugovich finally took the lead through turn one on lap 27. The MP pit wall instructed him to push and draw out at least a five-second gap on Doohan, already two seconds behind, on lap 29 – presumably out of concern for the investigation into his pit stop. By lap 32 Drugovich had extended his lead by more than four seconds, Vesti over six seconds back from the leaders in third.

Novalak was hunting down Calan Williams on lap 33, passing him easily along the main straight for seventh. The other MP driver was able to continue up the order, passing Pourchaire for fifth on lap 35. Enzo Fittipaldi followed him through, pushing Pourchaire down to seventh and into the clutches of Armstrong.

Drugovich had a 5.3 second lead on the final lap, coming across the line with more than half a second in hand to Doohan, even if he did receive a five-second penalty, Vesti following to complete the podium. Novalak, meanwhile, had closed a five second gap to Sargeant to just three tenths at the chequered flag, Sargeant narrowly keeping fourth.

The result extends Drugovich’s championship lead to a healthy 26 points ahead of Theo Pourchaire, as Formula 2 heads to Monaco next weekend.

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Formula 2 Spain race two results

Position Car Driver
1 11 Felipe Drugovich
2 3 Jack Doohan
3 9 Frederik Vesti
4 6 Logan Sargeant
5 12 Clement Novalak
6 22 Enzo Fittipaldi
7 7 Marcus Armstrong
8 10 Theo Pourchaire
9 5 Liam Lawson
10 16 Roy Nissany
11 21 Calan Williams
12 17 Ayumu Iwasa
13 1 Dennis Hauger
14 14 Olli Caldwell
15 25 Amaury Cordeel
16 24 Jake Hughes
17 8 Juri Vips
18 20 Richard Verschoor
19 4 Marino Sato
20 23 Cem Bolukbasi
DNF 2 Jehan Daruvala

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Author information

Hazel Southwell
Hazel is a motorsport and automotive journalist with a particular interest in hybrid systems, electrification, batteries and new fuel technologies....

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8 comments on “Drugovich takes Formula 2 feature race win with skilful tyre management”

  1. RandomMallard
    22nd May 2022, 12:29

    If Drugovich can keep this form up I think Williams should be having a good look at him to replace Latifi next year. On his day (and his consistency seems to be improving this year) he’s very, very quick and knows how to control a race and how to manage his tyres. And by the fact his family name is splattered right over his side pod I assume he comes with a bit of cash as well, if anyone can confirm this? Probably not Latifi rich, but with Williams saying they don’t need uber-rich pay drivers anymore I think Drugovich would be a good choice for them, if he can keep up these performances.

    1. His family is rich enough to pay for F2 but I think they don’t have much more left to spare, Drugovich told that he wouldn’t dbe in F2 this year, the only reason he remained is that MP had a very good proposal (almost free seat I guess). Some people in Brazil linked him with Aston Martin, he was seen talking to engineers in a GP last year (I don’t remember where it was). I honestly think he’s better than Mick and Zhou, his poor performance last year was weird to say the least. When the team is behind him, he seens to be the guy to beat.

  2. RandomMallard
    22nd May 2022, 12:39

    For anyone wondering why Drugovich is under investigation, according to the summons published on the FIA website it appears to be related to one of the wheels at the pit stop not being placed flat on the ground (a breach of article 28.10 of the F2 Sporting Regs). It is the same reason Pourchaire and Vesti are under investigation. I am not aware of any precedent for this but I would be quite surprised if it amounts to any time penalty, and expect it’ll probably just be a team fine. He has a 5.6 second buffer over Doohan just in case of a penalty though.

  3. Skillful tyre management? He drives an MP that for the past seasons have been by far the best car on tyre degregation, specially when its conditions like today with the heat. Still an impressive drive, but its a some what repeat of his own victory in the sprint at Barcelona and the shocking win for Matsushita in the feature race. And also a reference to Bahrains first feature race last year.

  4. Impressive recovery weekend from Drugovich after his qualifying struggles. Any feature win from 10th is an achievement, irrespective of the tyre strategy.

  5. Good drive, but looking at Novalak charging through the field I wonder if it was just MP’s setup being better in terms of tyre usage and pace overall? Both drivers basically pushed for every single lap, which is impossible in F2 normally. Reminded me of Virtuosi in 2020 when Ilott and Zhou would be able to push for every single lap, setting fastest laps towards the end of their stints (!).

    Having said that, it was a monumentally bad idea for drivers starting on the softs to not try and go a bit longer. Who pits just after a safety car? If they thought they could pass the hard runners quickly it was myopic because the hard tyres would not be degrading by lap 10.

    1. Enzo was charging very close to Novalak in a Charouz (and so was Armstrong behind), their strategy worked well that was another case. Of course MP improved but it’s not like they was a weak team and suddenly they’re running in the front. In 2017 Sette Camara by the end of the season scored a win and a podium. If you look at their results with Drugovich in 2020 and their results last year, it’s very clear by now that the team is the better one of the midfield but also it’s the driver making a difference.

  6. Good drive by Drugovich, unfortunate for Jehan and Iwasa. Overall the race was snoozefest.

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