George Russell takes 4th in Barcelona FIA F2 Sprint Race
Mercedes-AMG Petronas Motorsport Reserve Driver George Russell took a solid 4th position in the Sprint Race, as well as setting the fastest lap of the race to close the gap at the top of the FIA Formula 2 Championship standings.
After winning the Feature Race yesterday, Russell started the second race of the weekend from 8th position. The start took place under damp conditions after intermittent rain showers, alongside some overnight rain, interrupted the morning proceedings. Russell got a steady getaway from the fourth row of the grid, taking a cautious approach into Turn 1 and holding his position as the pack navigated the opening sequence of corners.
The first Virtual Safety Car (VSC) period was caused after Prema Racing’s Nyck de Vries span at Turn 10. Russell maintained position on the restart, before pulling off an opportunistic double overtake on the inside of Artem Markelov and Antonio Fuoco at Turn 11. Shortly after, a full safety car period was called – when Nirei Fukuzumi’s BWT Arden went over the top of Tadasuke Makino’s Russian Time at Turn 3.
As the race restarted, Russell remained in 6th position – just behind Carlin’s Sergio Sette Camara. Russell overtook Camara on the inside of Turn 1 with DRS enabled to move up into 5th position.
Russell began to close in rapidly onto the battling duo of Luca Ghiotto and Lando Norris in the battle for the final podium spot. Ghiotto began to drop back from Norris as Russell arrived on the back of the Campos driver’s gearbox – making a move into Turn 1 on lap 20 to take 4th position.
Russell held 4th to the chequered flag, setting the fastest lap on the final tour of the circuit to pick up the extra 2 bonus points to add to his tally from the weekend. Teammate Jack Aitken took the victory to complete a clean sweep of FIA F2 wins for ART Grand Prix in a great weekend for the team at Barcelona.
George Russell “The start was tricky with the damp track, so it was just about getting through the difficult early stages. After then we had the pace to get a second strong result, setting the fastest lap to get a few extra points for the championship. Congratulations to my teammate Jack for the win today, and a great job by the team to take victory in both races this weekend!”
After the third round of the championship, where Russell took his second victory of the season – he currently sits 3rd overall in the 2018 FIA Formula 2 Championship Standings on 62 points.
ART Grand Prix move into 2nd in the Team’s Championship on 105 points, after their brace of victories.
The next round of the championship takes place on the streets of Monte-Carlo, for the Monaco Grand Prix on the 24-26 May. It will be Russell’s first visit to the Principality and the unique street circuit, when the championship continues in a fortnight’s time.
Images: FIA F2 Media