Formula 1 Racing

Iwasa denies charging Martins for sprint race win · RaceFans

Iwasa denies charging Martins for sprint race win · RaceFans

Ayumu Iwasa won a closely-fought Formula 2 sprint race in Saudi Arabia which included two Safety Car periods.

The Red Bull junior took the lead on lap two, after starting fourth, and never lost position despite fierce pressure from behind.

Victor Martins, who is on pole for tomorrow’s feature race, climbed from 10th place to finish second, passing Jehan Daruvala on the way.

Jak Crawford lined up in pole position on the partially-reversed grid with Bahrain sprint race winner Ralph Boschung completing the front row. His Campos team mate Kush Maini completed the top three, while Iwasa joined him on the second row.

Crawford made an excellent start, but an even better one from Iwasa put him up to second by turn two. The DAMS driver had strong pace and was soon on Crawford’s tail. After going around the outside heading into turn one, Iwasa took the lead.

But moments later Zane Maloney spun out of the race at turn two, coming to a stop and triggering a Safety Car period. Iwasa managed the lap five restart perfectly, but there were changes behind him.

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With a risky move down the inside of turn two, Boschung claimed second place from Crawford. The next lap the Hitech driver lost another position at the chicane, this to Daruvala.

Crawford’s lead was short-lived

Seconds later on lap seven, the Safety Car was called for again. Theo Pourchaire, who had already completed one daring, late-braking pass at turn one, over-played his hand when he lunched down the inside of Jack Doohan.

Misjudging his braking point completely, Pourchaire clattered into the Prema of Oliver Bearman, putting both out of the race. After emerging from his damaged ART machine, Pourchaire approached his rival making apologetic gestures, though both Bearman and Doohan had already given withering assessments of his driving on their radios.

The lap 10 restart was once again controlled well by Iwasa. But next time around a three-lap battle broke out for second place between Boschung and Daruvala. First Daruvala overtook his rival down the inside of turn 27, before Boschung regained second the next lap at the opening corner.

Next time around the pair ran wheel-to-wheel down the pit straight, and the battle concluded as Daruvala took second down the inside of turn two after starting his move around the outside of the opening corner.

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However Boschung dropped further back as he lost the final podium position…

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