Felipe Drugovich dominated an entertaining Spanish Sprint Race to take victory, as several drivers struggled with tyres in closing stages.
Drugovich snatched the lead off the line from pole-sitter, Luca Ghiotto and quickly built a gap which he managed to the flag as everyone else struggled with the tyre wear of hard tyres.
Drugovich eventually won from Ghiotto by 9.536 seconds to win his second sprint race in his rookie F2 season, having previously won in Austrian Sprint last month.
Speaking post race on his win, Drugovich said; “Amazing race for me. I started P2 and got the jump past Luca into Turn 1. After that, the car was just amazing, basically the same as yesterday.”
Ghiotto clung onto second ahead of Mick Schumacher who completed the podium ahead of Yuki Tsunoda, Nobuharu Matsushita, Nikita Mazepin and Pedro Piquet as Callum Ilott snatched eighth after Christian Lundgaard received a post-race time penalty.
In terms of the drivers’ standings, Ilott extended his lead over Robert Shwartzman by one point to 18 points heading into the current final four scheduled rounds.
DAMS’ Sean Gelael didn’t participate in the race after he was declared unfit following an incident at the end of the Feature Race, in which he fractured a vertebrae.Embed from Getty Images
Ghiotto made a slow getaway which allowed Drugovich to blast past into the lead, whilst the Italian fended off Schumacher who found himself passed by Ilott round the outside of Turn One.
Drugovich quickly built up a three second gap to Ghiotto who managed to fend off constant challenges from Ilott, which climaxed at start of lap 14 when Ilott tried to sweep pass Ghiotto into Turn One but got squeezed onto the kerb at Turn Two.
Ghiotto then controlled his own race to second as Ilott’s tyres slowly gave way with Schumacher and Tsunoda demoting him to fifth on lap 21, before Matsushita, Mazepin and Piquet caught him in the final two laps.
Lundgaard meanwhile battled Deletraz for tenth in the opening stages before making a pass at Turn 10, shortly before Mazepin got Shwartzman at the start of the following lap with DRS into Turn One.
Come the final lap, Lundgaard was all over Ilott’s rear and attempted a late pass into the final chicane of Turns 14 and 15, only to run wide and take eighth at flag but stewards adjudged the pass as illegal and a five second time penalty demoted the Dane to 11th.
Shwartzman managed to finish 13th after opting to pit for used softs alongside several other drivers outside the points, with Dan Ticktum finishing the highest in 11th out of those who made a stop once their hard tyres completely wore out.
|1||Felipe Drugovich||MP Motorsport||26||41m 55.669|
|2||Luca Ghiotto||Hitech GP||26||+ 9.536|
|3||Mick Schumacher||Prema||26||+ 10.956|
|4||Yuki Tsunoda||Carlin||26||+ 14.924|
|5||Nobuharu Matsushita||MP Motorsport||26||+ 19.921|
|6||Nikita Mazepin||Hitech GP||26||+ 23.231|
|7||Pedro Piquet||Charouz||26||+ 24.528|
|8||Callum Ilott||Uni-Virtuosi||26||+ 29.718|
|9||Louis Deletraz||Charouz||26||+ 31.973|
|10||Dan Ticktum||DAMS||26||+ 32.155|
|11||Christian Lundgaard||ART GP||26||+ 34.196|
|12||Roy Nissany||Trident||26||+ 34.822|
|13||Robert Shwartzman||Prema||26||+ 41.254|
|14||Guanyu Zhou||Uni-Virtuosi||26||+ 41.996|
|15||Marcus Armstrong||ART GP||26||+ 43.413|
|16||Artem Markelov||HWA Racelab||26||+ 45.618|
|17||Jehan Daruvala||Carlin||26||+ 46.219|
|18||Jack Aitken||Campos||26||+ 48.431|
|19||Giuliano Alesi||HWA Racelab||26||+ 54.736|
|20||Guilherme Samaia||Campos||26||+ 1m 09.082|
|21||Marino Sato||Trident||26||+ 1m 14.667|