F2: Piastri wins shortened Saudi Arabian Feature Race as PREMA clinch teams' championship
Alpine junior Oscar Piastri won a shortened Formula 2 feature race in Jeddah, ahead of teammate Robert Shwartzman and Campos Racing’s Ralph Boschung. The race was red flagged and not restarted following two crashes and a lengthy pre-race delay, with only five laps completed and half points awarded.
Track repairs initially postponed the race, but when it did eventually get under way, there was a nasty collision between Theo Pourchaire and Enzo Fittipaldi that brought out a red flag. The Frenchman appeared to stall when the lights went out and the Brazilian was unable to avoid him, running into the back of the stationary ART Grand Prix.
Pourchaire and Fittipaldi were transferred to hospital and confirmed as conscious by an FIA statement.
The pair’s crash led to a lengthy red flag, after which the race was shortened to 20 minutes and one lap, with one mandatory pitstop and half points.
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Piastri hung onto first place after a rolling start, ahead of Shwartzman and Boschung. There was little movement in the top 10, but Dan Ticktum did manage to pass his Carlin teammate Jehan Daruvala, who slid down to 11th behind the British driver and Red Bull junior Liam Lawson.
Four laps had been completed when the drivers began to feed into the pits for a change of tyre, but Guilherme Samaia and Olli Caldwell then collided, and the race was red flagged for a second time. The pair clambered out of their cars, and it was swiftly confirmed that the race would not be restarted.
That meant that Piastri picked up his fifth win of the season, ahead of team mate Shwartzman, confirming PREMA as teams’ champions for the second season in a row.
Finishing third, Boschung took his first F2 podium, with Guanyu Zhou and Felipe Drugovich completing the top five, ahead of Juri Vips, Christian Lundgaard, Lawson and Ticktum.
Collecting half-points, Piastri increased his tally for the season to 213.5 and takes a 51.5-point lead over Ferrari junior Shwartzman heading into the season finale at Abu Dhabi. 2022 Alfa Romeo Formula 1 driver Guanyu Zhou is third on 149 and all but mathematically out of the title race, with only 65 more points on offer.
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