Isack Hadjar

Hadjar grabs title lead as Crawford loses win due to penalty

Formula 2

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Red Bull junior Isack Hadjar seized the lead of the Formula 2 championship by winning the Silverstone feature race following a penalty for Jak Crawford.

Crawford took the chequered flag first but fell to third behind Hadjar and Zane Maloney following a five-second post-race time penalty for an unsafe release in the pit lane.

Hadjar, who drove Sergio Perez’s Red Bull Formula 1 car in first practice, inherited the win. It moved him to the top of the series standings as Paul Aron failed to score any points following a penalty for causing a collision.

When the race began, Hadjar’s reaction times from pole position were poorer than those of Oliver Bearman and Victor Martins behind. Martins assumed the lead with Bearman moving up to second as Hadjar slotted into third position ahead of Crawford.

The Safety Car was deployed before the end of the opening lap as sprint race winner Andrea Kimi Antonelli was stranded on track at Farm following a hit from Kush Maini. The race resumed at the beginning of lap three, with Martins again leading from Bearman.

But the Safety Car returned to the track before the end of the lap after a clash between championship leader Paul Aron and Joshua Duerksen at Woodcote. Duerksen spun off into the gravel and Aron recovered to the pits with damage.

The race restarted for a second time at the start of lap seven, with Bearman coming under pressure from Hadjar behind as Martins edged away in the lead. Hadjar passed Bearman for second entering the Hangar Straight on lap eight before the pair of them pitted together to fit the hard tyres.

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Martins pitted soon after but Hadjar immediately caught up to him and began to challenge for the next lead of the race. The Red Bull junior attempted to pass the Alpine junior around the outside of Stowe but appeared to be pushed wide on the exit. The stewards noted the incident but did not investigate.

Those who had started on the hard tyre moved to the front of the field, with Franco Colapinto taking the lead ahead of Juan Manuel Correa and Pepe Marti in third. Behind, Hadjar’s challenge of Martins resumed, with the Campos driver eventually prevailing following a lengthy battle from Stowe to Farm.

But the scrap allowed Crawford behind to catch and pass the pair of them, moving into the net lead of the race. However, Crawford was hit with a five-second time penalty for an unsafe pit release, putting his chances of victory in peril.

Colapinto eventually pitted from the lead at the end of lap 22, emerging in seventh on soft tyres. The Williams junior caught and passed Martins before setting off in pursuit of Maloney ahead. Crawford soon moved back into the lead and set about trying to pull a five-second gap to Hadjar behind, but Hadjar fought to keep pace with the DAMS driver and refused to let him gain that much of an advantage.

Crawford took the chequered flag at the end of lap 29, but his lead was just over three seconds to Hadjar, which handed the win to the Red Bull junior – the second consecutive race of the day where the winner on-track lost victory because of a post-race time penalty. Maloney finished 1.6 seconds behind Hadjar in third, which meant he was promoted to second over Crawford by just a tenth of a second, while Crawford clung onto the final podium position in third.

Colapinto took fourth with his alternative strategy ahead of Martins and Gabriel Bortoleto. Bearman finished in seventh with Enzo Fittipaldi, Dennis Hauger and Pepe Marti claiming the final points places.

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Championship leader Aron fell out of the points after a 10-second penalty for causing the earlier collision with Duerksen. As a result, he failed to score which means Hadjar leaps out into the lead of the championship with his victory on 133 points, 16 points ahead of Aron, while Maloney moves up to third with his second place.

Formula 2 Great Britain race two results

Position Car Driver Team
1 20 Isack Hadjar Campos
2 5 Zane Maloney Rodin
3 7 Jak Crawford DAMS
4 12 Franco Colapinto MP Motorsport
5 1 Victor Martins ART
6 10 Gabriel Bortoleto Invicta
7 3 Ollie Bearman Prema
8 14 Enzo Fittipaldi Van Amersfoort
9 11 Dennis Hauger MP Motorsport
10 21 Josep Maria Marti Campos
11 2 Zak O’Sullivan ART
12 17 Paul Aron Hitech
13 22 Richard Verschoor Trident
14 25 Taylor Barnard AIX
15 16 Amaury Cordeel Hitech
16 15 Rafael Villagomez Van Amersfoort
17 6 Ritomo Miyata Rodin
18 23 Roman Stanek Trident
19 9 Kush Maini Invicta
20 8 Juan Manuel Correa DAMS
DNF 24 Joshua Duerksen AIX
DNF 4 Andrea Kimi Antonelli Prema

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Will Wood
Will has been a RaceFans contributor since 2012 during which time he has covered F1 test sessions, launch events and interviewed drivers. He mainly...

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5 comments on “Hadjar grabs title lead as Crawford loses win due to penalty”

  1. Hadjar is an ideal Red Bull driver material
    – very fast
    – very reckless
    – doesn’t make mistakes
    – if he makes a mistake, it was not his fault
    – terrible teammate
    – while defending, forcing other drivers off the track
    – if he’s forced off the track, he overtakes off the track and then forces the other guy off the track
    – whines a lot

    Poor Liam is just too much of a good guy to earn himself a spot at RB (or RB).

    1. Lawson is a good, solid driver. His problem is that Red Bull has little interest in a good, solid driver, they are on the look-out for a top-level driver who could potentially lead Red Bull of Verstappen leaves. My impression is that Lawson has reached the end of his development and he is not strong enough to be a top-level driver.

      Hadjar on the other hand, while still rough around the edges, has made a noticeable improvement this year. This potential is what makes him so interesting.

      This is why good, solid drivers like Lawson, Drugovich, Vesti, etc. often don’t make it into F1, because for the top-teams it makes much more sense to invest in driver potential, even if it does not always play out. Because if it plays out it is a jackpot.

  2. I actually like Hadjar for the same reasons you listed, although I have heard him apologise to the team for his mistakes a few times so that’s not entirely true.

    His angry radio messages are what stood out the most to me – he really struggles to accept defeat, and that’s exactly the mentality that a champion needs.

    I hope Red Bull give him a chance at some point, although they seem set on keeping under performing dinosaurs at the moment.

    1. I have heard him apologise to the team for his mistakes a few times so that’s not entirely true.

      “Sorry, mate. That is because of Victor, man!” from this race doesn’t sound like an apology to me. But I don’t remember the other moments he was to apologise, so you might be right.

  3. Also lol for Aron receiving a penalty for the exact same thing Tsolov did not receive yesterday. The only difference is that Mini is a better driver than Durksen, so they didn’t crash. But the stewards are consistent and not looking at the result of the incident as always.

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