Callum Ilott is the first repeat pole-sitter of the 2020 Formula 2 Championship season after narrowly qualifying fastest for the series’ second leg at Silverstone.

The UNI-Virtuosi driver, who claimed his first F2 pole in the wet at the Hungaroring, moved to the top of the timesheets with a time of 1:39.062 to deny ART Grand Prix driver Christian Lundgaard his maiden pole position by just over one-tenth of a second.

Lundgaard provisionally held top spot after the first qualifying runs, but Ilott’s second attempt proved just good enough to see the Ferrari junior driver move ahead of his Renault junior rival.  The result was all the more impressive considering Ilott’s first attempt was only good enough for twelfth-fastest, but he found an extra six-tenths of a second on the stopwatch next time out.

Ilott’s pole position was confirmed thanks to a late yellow flag triggered by DAMS’ Sean Gelael spinning off at Copse, denying a number of drivers a shot at improving with potentially quicker times.

Three British drivers occupy the first four places on the grid, with the second row locked out by Campos Racing’s Jack Aitken and DAMS’ Dan Ticktum who won last weekend’s Sprint Race.

Luca Ghiotto (Hitech Grand Prix) was fifth-fastest ahead of Ilott’s teammate Guan Yu Zhou, who was on track to potentially better his earlier qualifying time until Gelael’s spin.

Ghiotto’s teammate and last weekend’s Feature Race winner Nikita Mazepin will line up from seventh on the grid ahead of practice pacesetter Mick Schumacher (Prema Racing), with the German left to rue an error at Becketts on his final flying lap.

Louis Delétraz (Charouz Racing System) was ninth ahead of Red Bull junior Yuki Tsunoda (Carlin).

Current championship leader Robert Shwartzmann’s Silverstone struggles continued, with the Russian only able to qualify his Prema eleventh-fastest ahead of last weekend’s first-time pole-sitter Felipe Drugovich (MP Motorsport).

With Ilott placed second in the Drivers’ Championship standings and claiming a valuable four championship points for clinching pole position, Shwartmann’s slip points lead has been cut to just four over his fellow Ferrari Academy driver.

2020 FIA Formula 2 Championship – Britain (II) Qualifying Results
Driver Team / Entry Time Gap
1. Callum Ilott UNI Virtuosi Racing UNI-Virtuosi Logo 1:39.062
2. Christian Lundgaard ART Grand Prix 1:39.177 + 0.115
3. Jack Aitken Campos Racing 1:39.278 + 0.216
4. Dan Ticktum DAMS 1:39.326 + 0.264
5. Luca Ghiotto Hitech Grand Prix 1:39.362 + 0.300
6. Guan Yu Zhou UNI Virtuosi Racing UNI-Virtuosi Logo 1:39.394 + 0.332
7. Nikita Mazepin Hitech Grand Prix 1:39.410 + 0.348
8. Mick Schumacher Prema Racing 1:39.448 + 0.386
9. Louis Delétraz Charouz Racing System 1:39.474 + 0.412
10. Yuki Tsunoda Carlin Motorsport 1:39.494 + 0.432
11. Robert Shwartzman Prema Racing 1:39.525 + 0.463
12. Felipe Drugovich MP Motorsport 1:39.526 + 0.464
13. Pedro Piquet Charouz Racing System 1:39.621 + 0.559
14. Marino Sato Trident Racing 1:39.679 + 0.617
15. Sean Gelael DAMS 1:39.783 + 0.721
16. Jehan Daruvala Carlin Motorsport 1:39.790 + 0.728
17. Nobuhara Matsushita MP Motorsport 1:39.961 + 0.899
18. Artem Markelov BWT HWA Racelab 1:40.094 + 1.032
19. Marcus Armstrong ART Grand Prix 1:40.299 + 1.237
20. Giuliano Alesi BWT HWA Racelab 1:40.485 + 1.423
21. Roy Nissany Trident Racing 1:40.615 + 1.553
22. Guilherme Samaia Campos Racing 1:41.061 + 1.999

Post-Qualifying Penalties:

  • Gelael will serve a five-place grid penalty for a tyre regulations breach.

Image via FIA Formula 2 Championship

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Geoff Burke

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