F2: Ferrari junior driver Bearman wins chaotic Baku Sprint Race under Safety Car
Ferrari protege Oliver Bearman stole the show to claim his first Formula 2 victory in a dramatic Baku Sprint Race. Three Safety Cars and 11 DNFs meant it was a game of survival from start to finish.
Start-line chaos saw reverse pole-sitter Richard Verschoor retire on Lap 1 after clipping the wall at Turn 1. Victor Martins and Zane Maloney also banged wheels as the ART Grand Prix driver attempted to take second, leaving the Rodin Carlin with a puncture.
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Promoted to the lead from sixth, Dennis Hauger survived an early restart on Lap 6, courtesy of Ralph Boschung tagging the inside wall at Turn 11.
Meanwhile, Vesti then sliced his way past Jehan Daruvala for the final podium spot as Bearman - who had started ninth after achieving his first pole position on Friday - swifty made his own move past the MP Motorsport driver.
Roy Nissany brought out the return of the Safety Car after finding the wall on the exit of Turn 15, leaving the field with a three-lap restart to the finish.
Struggling with a lack of grip, chaos unfolded. Leaders Hauger and Martins both hit the barriers at Turn 1, whilst fourth-placed Daruvala had nowhere to go and collided with the underneath of the Alpine junior’s car. Pourchaire and Arthur Leclerc also ran wide into the runoff and Jack Doohan locked up and spun out of the race.
Promoted to the lead, Vesti ran wide at Turn 4, Bearman snatched the lead moments before the Safety Car was deployed to conclude the race.
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Red Bull junior Crawford secured his second rookie podium in third, ahead of Kush Maini, Enzo Fittipaldi and Juan Manuel Correa. Trident’s Clement Novalak and Roman Stanek brought home their first points of the season, after Isack Hadjar received a five-second time penalty for overtaking before the Safety Car restart line.
Bearman has the chance to do the double, when he starts on pole for Sunday’s Feature Race at 1125 local time.
Head to the official Formula 2 website for the full report.
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