F2 Sprint Race review: Hungary 2018


29 July 2018
Louis drove a very nice race and I think he would have claimed P8 if he'd had another lap.

“Louis drove a very nice race and I think he would have claimed P8 if he'd had another lap.”


Antonin Charouz  

Charouz Racing System missed out on a point-scoring finish during the FIA Formula 2 Championship Sprint Race in Hungary earlier today (29 July) – by a margin of only 0.55 seconds.

With Antonio Fuoco’s impressive P3 finish in Saturday’s rain-soaked Feature Race fresh in the memory, the Czech team had high hopes for another strong performance during the shorter Sprint encounter, particularly with the Italian starting from P6 on the grid at the Hungaroring.

However, the Ferrari Driver Academy pilot hit trouble on the third lap when he clipped the rear of a rival’s car during the restart after a Virtual Safety Car (VSC) period. The impact damaged the front wing on Antonio’s car and he was forced to make an unplanned pit stop for a replacement and a new front-left tyre.

That dropped him down the order and his hopes of a strong finish were gone. He did set the fastest lap of the race – a blistering 1:31.889 – as he tried to recover, but he was unable to finish higher than P17.

With Antonio out of the fight, the team’s point-scoring hopes rested firmly with team-mate Louis Delétraz who was keen to end his weekend on a positive note after he encountered trouble during Saturday’s Feature Race.

Starting from P17 on the Sprint Race grid, the ADSS Group-supported driver was immediately up to speed on the dry circuit. He took P12 with a neat double overtake past two of his rivals on lap 16, before then using his expertly managed tyres to challenge for a place inside the top ten.

A couple of measured overtakes took the Swiss driver up to P10 before he then stole P9 on the penultimate lap. With P8 yielding a championship point, Louis closed on the gearbox of championship leader George Russell as he looked to pass on the final lap. However, the 21-year-old just ran out of time and had to settle for P9 – only 0.55 seconds shy of P8.

Despite the team’s podium-winning success on Saturday, it has slipped to fourth place in the Teams’ Championship standings (out of 10 teams), and is now a point behind DAMS Racing. Antonio fills P6 in the Drivers’ Championship, while Louis occupies P9.

With the eighth round of the F2 series in Hungary complete, the Charouz Racing System team now has a four-week break until the next round of the season at Spa-Francorchamps in Belgium (24-26 August).

Team owner, Antonin Charouz, said: “Today’s Sprint Race showed just how quickly your luck can turn around in F2 racing. Louis drove a very nice race and I think he would have claimed P8 if he’d had another lap. Antonio’s collision was unfortunate because we were all keen to build on yesterday’s P3 result.”

Team principal, Bob Vavrik, said: “Although Louis just missed scoring a point, he did very well. His tyre management was perfect and his pace was very strong again. If we didn’t have to change the nose and front-left tyre of Antonio, I think he could have been P2 or P3 again today.”

Louis Delétraz said: “Today’s race once again showed that we have fantastic pace in the car and I felt very confident with my tyres and performance. I was pleased to come from P17 to P9 and end the weekend positively. It’s just a shame that the Feature Race result meant I had to start so far down the grid today because points were very realistic.”

Antonio Fuoco said: “It was a disappointing Sprint Race me. I made a good start and then I had contact with Sette Camara. I don’t know exactly what happened. My feeling was that I started to push and then I slowed down again.”

Louis drove a very nice race and I think he would have claimed P8 if he'd had another lap.

“Louis drove a very nice race and I think he would have claimed P8 if he'd had another lap.”


Antonin Charouz  
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