F2: De Vries Dominates Monaco Feature Race

Nyck de Vries claimed top honours in Formula 2, after an action-packed Feature Race in Monaco. Image sourced from @FIA_F2 via Twitter.

ART’s Nyck de Vries kept control to dominate the Formula 2 Feature Race at Monaco. This was despite Mick Schumacher causing a red flag following a collision with Tatiana Calderon.

De Vries benefitted from the two-group qualifying system used in Monaco to take Pole Position. Charouz’s Callum Ilott qualified second and Uni-Virtuosi’s Luca Ghiotto managed third. On the other hand, championship leader Nicholas Latifi could only manage eighth.

The first attempted start was aborted, after Ilott stalled on the first row of the grid as his car shut down. A second formation lap was needed to recover the Brit back to the pits, who would fail to make the restart.

De Vries Dominantes

De Vries got a great start ahead of Luca Ghiotto, and were followed by Sergio Sette Camara, Anthoine Hubert and Mick Schumacher into Turn 1.

Elsewhere, Jack Aitken suffered suspension damage to his Campos car, but managed to continue, Nobuharu Matsushita jumped from ninth to sixth.

On Lap 3, Schumacher lunged down the inside of Hubert at Mirabeau and reclaimed fourth place.

After setting consecutive fastest laps, De Vries had built up a two second lead as Aitken pitted on Lap 6. Behind them, the returning Artem Markelov received a ten-second time penalty for gaining an advantage at Saint Devote during the start of the race.

Two laps later, Hubert, Sean Gelael, Boschung, Nikita Mazepin all pitted for new tyres, with Gelael passing Hubert in the process. On Lap 9, Schumacher, Latifi and Louis Deletraz did the same, and all re-joined ahead of Gelael and Hubert.

After a mistake by Dorian Boccolacci at Portier, Markelov moved into fifth place, though the Russian was yet to stop. By this stage, De Vries held a five seconds lead over Ghitotto, as Latifi tried to overtake Schumacher for tenth place.

A very optimistic move by Latifi at the inside of the Lowes hairpin,  resulted in contact between the both drivers. Although Schumacher’s Prema was undamaged, Lafiti’s DAMS had a knock on the front wing pitted for repairs at the end of the lap.

Monte Carlo Traffic Brings Out Red Flag

Schumacher and 11th placed Deletraz were stuck behind Tatiana Calderon, which caused frustration for the German. Because of this, Schumacher tried to overtake Calderon into La Rascasse and caused contact between the two drivers.

Consequently, Calderon was spun round by Schumacher – who himself had damaged his front wing – and blocked up the track. As a result, the race stewards deploy the red flag.

The incident reshaped the races of many drivers. While De Vries had lost a six second, the likes of Latifi and Aitken had a change to make up lost ground. In addition, the majority of the field lost a lap to the leaders as a result of the red flag.

After the marshals cleared the traffic jam and the Safety Car pulled, the racing resumed on Lap 22 with De Vries leading the field.

Schumacher recieved a five-second time penalty for leaving the track and gaining an advantage on the restart. On top of this, the German was also given a drive-through penalty for his collision with Calderon and dropped to 17th.

Schumacher serves his drive-through penalty on lap 24 and falls to 17th. Meanwhile,  Markelov was running well in fifth place on his Formula 2 return. However, a lock-up at the Nouvelle Chicane to undone his hard work and dropped him from eighth.

More Mayhem in Monaco

Behind him, Latifi overtakes Hubert for 11th place, while more contact occurs at La Rascasse as Gelael’s front wing becomes loose.

A replay shows that Latifi nudged Gelael from behing and into the wall, with the former receiving a drive-through penalty. However, the damage was done and the unscheduled stop for a new front wing demoted the Indonesian driver to 18th.

Back at the front, De Vries continued where he’d left off and increased his advantage to 4.8 seconds over Ghiotto. On Lap 36, Ghiotto, Matsushita and Boccalacci all pit for fresh tyres and re-join in third, fourth and fifth behind Camara.

De Vries and Camara both respond on the following lap and make their stops. While De Vries maintains the race lead, Camara loses second place to Ghiotto. Shortly after, the Brazilian is then past by Matsushita for third.

On Lap 39, Aitken got pushed into the barrier at the Loews hairpin by Mahaveer Ragunathan. On the same lap, Juan Manuel Correa crashes at La Piscine after going over the kerbing as well. This caused a brief Safety Car appearance, before the action resumed on Lap 41.

De Vries Brings It Home

On the restart, Nyck De Vries remained in control and crossed the line to take back-to-back victories. Luca Ghiotto was second and Nobuharu Matsushita in third.

Sergio Sette Camara finished in fourth with Dorian Boccalacci in an impressive fifth. Guanyu Zhou kept out danger to claim, with Artem Markelov and Louis Deletraz rounding out the points.

After finishing eighth, Deletraz will start tomorrow’s Formula 2 Sprint Race in Monaco, on Pole Position.