Charles Leclerc dominated proceedings on Saturday’s feature race of the British GP in Silverstone. The PREMA driver started from pole and only briefly looked troubled when a smoking rear end threatened to end his race with engine problems.
After an aborted start, Leclerc held the lead at the second start as Norma Nato muscled past a slow-starting Rowland to take P2. Six laps in and already all of the option runners were pitting for prime tyres while Leclerc opted to stay out when his car appeared to smoke heavily mid-way through the lap, prompting an immediate pit stop the next lap. This turned out to be benign and the Monegasque re-emerged ahead of most his direct rivals, with only those who started on prime tyres ahead.
As Leclerc closed in on the yet-to-pit queue ahead, he also began to open a gap to Norman Nato and Oliver Rowland who were tussling for P3. With 8 laps to go, Leclerc’s car shed some weight when his wing mirror bizarrely flew off his machine as he hunted down Nobuharu Matsushita, before the Japanese finally made his mandatory pit-stop, giving the lead back to Leclerc.
The Ferrari junior took the chequered flag and his fifth victory of 2017, some 9 seconds ahead of Nato who held his own in front of Rowland as the Briton took a podium on home soil.
Artem Markelov was next across the line in fourth ahead of the mercurial Canamasas in fifth and Luca Ghiotto who battled his way in the end to sixth. Behind them Jordan King only managed seventh ahead of Nicholas Latifi, who takes reversed-grid pole by finishing 8th while Sean Gelael and Nobuharu Matsushita completed the top ten.
The Sprint Race, to be held over 21 laps, starts on Sunday at 09:20 local time (GMT+1).
|2017 FIA Formula 2 Championship Race of Britain – Feature Race Final Classification (28 laps*)|
|Driver||Team / Entry||Laps||Result|
|1.||Charles Leclerc||PREMA Racing||28||49:23.075|
|2.||Norman Nato||Pertamina Arden||28||+ 8.866|
|3.||Oliver Rowland||DAMS||28||+ 9.605|
|4.||Artem Markelov||Russian Time||28||+ 17.743|
|5.||Sergio Canamasas||Rapax||28||+ 18.715|
|6.||Luca Ghiotto||Russian Time||28||+ 24.284|
|7.||Jordan King||MP Motorsport||28||+ 26.498|
|8.||Nicholas Latifi||DAMS||28||+ 27.805|
|9.||Sean Gelael||Pertamina Arden||28||+ 28.904|
|10.||Nobuharu Matsushita||ART Grand Prix||28||+ 34.560|
|11.||Ralph Boschung||Campos Racing||28||+ 44.764|
|12.||Louis Delétraz||Racing Engineering||28||+ 46.536|
|13.||Sergio Sette Câmara||MP Motorsport||28||+ 47.050|
|14.||Gustav Malja||Racing Engineering||28||+ 50.673|
|15.||Nabil Jeffri||Trident||28||+ 56.457|
|16.||Antonio Fuoco||PREMA Racing||28||+ 1:01.335|
|17.||Robert Vișoiu||Campos Racing||28||+ 1:09.543|
|18.||Alexander Albon||ART Grand Prix||28||+ 1:12.549|
|19.||Callum Ilott||Trident||27||1 lap behind|
|Not Classified||Team / Entry||Laps||Result|
|DNS.||Nyck de Vries||Rapax||Electrical|
|Fastest Lap||Team / Entry||Lap||Time|
|Nobuharu Matsushita||ART Grand Prix||23||1:42.512|
* Race distance reduced from 29 laps to 28 laps after first start was aborted.
Image via FIA Formula 2 Championship
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