Sochi F2: De Vries seals title with feature race win

Nyck de Vries won the Formula 2 championship title after taking a nail-biting win for ART Grand Prix at Sochi.

Sochi F2: De Vries seals title with feature race win

Luca Ghiotto led much of the race on the alternate strategy – unusual for someone starting in third – starting on medium tyres and switching to supersofts towards the end.

He ran until the end of lap 24 out of 28 on the mediums and was consistently lapping quicker than those on fresher tyres.

But when UNI-Virtuosi driver Ghiotto came back out after changing tyres, he was 6.3s adrift and although he moved forward, he couldn’t catch de Vries. 

The win guaranteed de Vries the title a round early, giving ART a second drivers’ title in a row following Williams F1 driver George Russell’s 2018 success. 

The key for the Dutchman was to hold title rival and DAMS ace Nicholas Latifi – who started second – at bay and then remain ahead at the pitstops. His rapid laps throughout the race meant Ghiotto couldn't save his tyres as much as he would have liked.

Williams junior Latifi needed to win to have any chance of erasing de Vries' huge deficit, but did hold second in the race as a consolation.

At the end, not only could Ghiotto not pass Latifi but he was overtaken by Louis Deletraz at the end, the Carlin driver sealing the final podium spot with a brave move at Turn 13.

Ghiotto held off his rival for third in the championship, Sergio Sette Camara of DAMS, who was rapid in the closing stages.

Honda junior Nobuharu Matsushita in the second Carlin-run car claimed sixth, ahead of Campos Racing’s Jack Aitken and Nikita Mazepin (ART), who takes pole for the reversed-grid race on Sunday at his home grand prix.

Ferrari junior Callum Ilott of the Sauber Junior Team and Ghiotto’s teammate Guan Yu Zhou sealed the points-paying positions in the top 10.

Ferrari junior Mick Schumacher had run right behind Matsushita having also started on the medium tyre, until he started to smoke and drop oil with 11 laps to go. He retired a few laps later. 

Artem Markelov was the first retirement, pulling to a stop in the final sector in his first start with Arden, in place of the late Anthoine Hubert.

Ilott’s debutant teammate and SMP Racing driver Matevos Isaakyan suffered a damaging early lock-up and finished 18th and last.

Race results:

shares
comments
Correa’s lungs improve, chooses surgery over amputation

Previous article

Correa’s lungs improve, chooses surgery over amputation

Next article

Matsushita, Mazepin taken to hospital after Sochi crash

Matsushita, Mazepin taken to hospital after Sochi crash
Load comments
The Red Bull F1 junior aiming to defy geographical odds Prime

The Red Bull F1 junior aiming to defy geographical odds

It's a long way from Pukekohe New Zealand to Milton Keynes, but Red Bull's Kiwi protege Liam Lawson has defied plenty of odds to reach the rung below F1. He's endured disappointment since winning on his F2 debut in Bahrain, but is determined to turn his season around and prove himself worthy of a place on the F1 grid

FIA F2
Jul 27, 2021
How Red Bull's next F1 hopeful turned around his season Prime

How Red Bull's next F1 hopeful turned around his season

Having impressed in Formula 3, Juri Vips looked to be next cab off the rank in Red Bull's prestigious Junior Team before his 2020 schedule was dealt a heavy blow by the COVID-19 pandemic. After a tough start to life in Formula 2, Vips is showing signs of a recovery - could he be the first Estonian to reach Formula 1?

FIA F2
Jun 14, 2021
How F1 hopeful Pourchaire is re-writing the F2 record books Prime

How F1 hopeful Pourchaire is re-writing the F2 record books

He'd marked himself out as a star of the future in last year's FIA Formula 3 championship, but 17-year-old Theo Pourchaire underlined his credentials by winning his first Formula 2 race in the Monaco feature. Sauber junior status gives him a clear route to the top, but with wisdom beyond his years, he's not getting caught up in his own hype.

FIA F2
Jun 3, 2021
The F1 hopeful living two lives to keep his dream alive Prime

The F1 hopeful living two lives to keep his dream alive

Having lost his backing from Red Bull, Richard Verschoor has had to graft to continue his ascent up the single-seater ladder. An impressive Formula 2 debut in Bahrain, despite the lateness of his deal, shows his unorthodox approach is paying dividends.

FIA F2
Apr 22, 2021
Was Formula 2’s radical format switch a success? Prime

Was Formula 2’s radical format switch a success?

Going into the 2021 Formula 2 season the biggest talking point wasn’t about any drivers or teams, but the new race weekend format. Created partly out of financial necessity but also to spice up the action, the Bahrain opener provided a snapshot of the positives and negatives to come.

FIA F2
Apr 4, 2021
Why 2021 is make-or-break for the driver F1 needs Prime

Why 2021 is make-or-break for the driver F1 needs

He was tipped for glory in FIA Formula 2 last year, but was hampered by reliability woes at inopportune moments. Guanyu Zhou knows he won't get too many more chances if he is to become China's first F1 driver, with fierce competition within the ranks of Alpine's junior stable

FIA F2
Mar 25, 2021
Ranked! Carlin's greatest F1 graduates Prime

Ranked! Carlin's greatest F1 graduates

Carlin has helped guide enough drivers to Formula 1 to fill out an entire grid, plus a handful of reserves, to create a remarkable alumni list. With Yuki Tsunoda set to join that group, Motorsport.com has ranked its graduates to grace the grand prix scene...

Formula 1
Feb 22, 2021
How Mick Schumacher earned his Haas F1 chance Prime

How Mick Schumacher earned his Haas F1 chance

Michael Schumacher may have won seven Formula 1 titles, but he didn't even compete for a crown at the second tier. Son Mick put that right in 2020, and proved to Ferrari that he was deserving of a shot at motorsport's elite category in 2021…

Formula 1
Jan 9, 2021