Jehan Daruvala has taken his first-ever Formula 2 win at Sakhir for the final race of the season. After finishing eighth in the feature race on Sunday, Daruvala took a well-fought victory around the 11-corner oval layout of the Bahrain International Circuit. Additionally, Mick Schumacher finally sealed his Formula 2 championship title. Racing for the Carlin team, Daruvala took his maiden podium in Formula 2 last weekend in Bahrain. Now Daruvala has taken his first win in F2 after a well-fought battle with Dan Ticktum.
Daruvala started the race from 2nd thanks to the reverse grid for the final sprint race of the season. Daruvala got a poor start after being blocked off by Ticktum into turn 1. This allowed Schumacher who started third to place himself upto second. But a huge lock-up by Schumacher on his first lap slowed him down and Daruvala took advantage and got passed to take back second place.
On lap 4, Schumacher and Daruvala again traded places. However, four laps later Schumacher began struggling with his tyres and Daruvala got passed and reclaimed second. Daruvala began reeling Ticktum and as the race progressed, both began pulling away from the pack.
Leading the race, Ticktum had Daruvala breathing down his neck but was defending first place well. Daruvala kept the pressure on, but was patient as he seemed to know that a win was likely on the cards. Ticktum kept all of Daruvala’s attacks at bay as the Indian attempted to dive down the inside or even using the outside line.
But with 10 laps to go of the 38 lap race, Daruvala was close enough to make his move. Daruvala took a dive down the inside of Ticktum approaching the final corner. Daruvala finally took the lead. Down the main straight, Ticktum tried to reclaim the lead, but Daruvala pushed him to the outside and kept his lead into turn 1.
Daruvala maintained the race lead to the end to take his first F2 win. However, Ticktum lost second place to Yuki Tsunoda. This allowed for Carlin to take a 1-2 finish with Dan Ticktum finishing third.
After the race, Daruvala said; “It feels really good to win the last race of the season and finish on a high. It was a great battle out there with Dan (Ticktum), which got close at times, but we respected each other and raced well. The car was really good and I couldn’t have asked for a better finish.”
Further down the order, Callum Illott who was hoping to steal the championship from Schumacher was unable to do so. Schumacher pitted dropping down to the back of the grid. In the latter half of the race, Illott also began to struggle with his tyres.
Illott finished 11th and out of the points allowing Schumacher to take the championship title at the final race of the season. Schumacher clinched the title with a tally of 215 points, 14 ahead of Ilott on 201. Tsunoda finished just one point behind Ilott in third,
Mick Schumacher and Nikita Mazepin, who finished ninth, will graduate to Formula 1 from next year. The Haas F1 Team has confirmed both of the young drivers for next year as Romain Grosjean and Kevin Magnussen will leave F1 after the 2020 season.
Next year’s F2 grid will be finalised after the post-season test in Sakhir which is scheduled on Tuesday, December 8.
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