Jack Doohan has turned his 2023 campaign around in the space of two rounds as he snatched his second consecutive Feature Race victory at Spa-Francorchamps. On the alternate strategy, the Invicta Virtuosi Racing driver capitalised on a fortuitous Safety Car and made the most of his soft tyres to wrestle P1 away from Théo Pourchaire.

With his nearest rival Frederik Vesti out of the race, Pourchaire retook the Championship lead with his ninth podium of season. Enzo Fittipaldi came out on top in a lengthy battle with Rodin Carlin teammate Zane Maloney, making a pass on the final lap to return to the podium in third.


There was a twist in the title fight before the lights went out, as Championship leader Frederik Vesti spun off on the reconnaissance lap down the Kemmel Straight. Unable to make the start, his absence left a wide-open gap on the front row.

Pole-sitter Oliver Bearman was untroubled off the line, as third-placed Victor Martins bogged down at lights out, falling back to P7 before repassing Ralph Boschung and Dennis Hauger out of Turn 1.

Heading into Les Combes, DAMS’ Ayumu Iwasa tagged the Norwegian, damaging his own suspension, and leaving both Red Bull juniors out of the race. Hauger’s stranded car triggered the Safety Car.

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Bearman pulled clear on the restart on Lap 4, as the Rodin Carlin duo squabbled over third. Having rocketed up from eighth to fourth on the opening lap, Fittipaldi tried to pass Maloney along the Kemmel Straight. Slight contact sent Maloney wide, allowing Martins to slip past the Bajan driver into fourth.

Pourchaire then began applying pressure on Bearman, but the track was too damp off line for the Frenchman to risk a move. A lock up for the PREMA on Lap 6 opened the door for Pourchaire, but he couldn’t capitalise, following the Briton wide across the run-off.

Despite being on the alternative strategy, Clément Novalak was the first driver to box, swapping his mediums for softs after only 10 laps of running.

Having made his way up from P13 to P9, Isack Hadjar followed his compatriot into the pits one lap later. With the pit exit wet and fitted with cold tyres, the Hitech Pulse-Eight driver hit the barrier and damaged the front wing, necessitating a Virtual Safety Car appearance.

Back to racing conditions on Lap 13, Pourchaire reacted perfectly to hound Bearman on the restart, as Fittipaldi closed up on the pair. Martins and Maloney behind pitted for their mandatory stops from fourth and fifth, filtering out on the mediums at the end of the top 10.

The leaders responded, but a slightly slower stop for PREMA Racing handed track position to Pourchaire, who emerged from the pitlane ahead of Bearman.

Opting for the overcut, Fittipaldi rejoins just in front of Pourchaire. But with cold tyres, the Brazilian couldn’t keep the Sauber junior behind, as he, Bearman and Martins overtook him before Les Combes.

Out in front, Doohan’s fortunes changed on Lap 16, as a spin for Jak Crawford after contact with Juan Manuel Correa at Les Combes brought out another Safety Car appearance. Seizing the moment, the Australian pitted for the soft tyres and emerged directly behind Pourchaire in second.

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Pourchaire opted to go late on the restart to hold off Doohan. Just behind, Bearman and Martins made contact as they fought, but retained their positions in third and fourth respectively.

Patiently waiting for his opportunity, Doohan’s chance arrived on Lap 23. With DRS wide open, the Alpine junior swept by into Les Combes. Pourchaire tried to fight back under braking but had to bail out and the #14 Invicta Virtuosi had already broken 1.4s clear by the start/finish straight.

Trading moves throughout the race, the Rodin Carlins’ back-and-forth battle finally came to an end of the final lap, as Fittipaldi retook fifth from Maloney, utilising the DRS advantage down the Kemmel Straight.

Going from 11th to first, Doohan returned to the top step with his fifth Formula 2 victory, ahead of Pourchaire and Martins. However, Martins received a five-second time penalty for speeding in the pit lane, whilst fourth-placed Bearman was also penalised for causing a collision, promoting Fittipaldi to the podium.

Maloney capped off a strong race in fourth, ahead of Martins. Richard Verschoor secured points for Van Amersfoort Racing in sixth ahead of Bearman and Kush Maini, who climbed from P19 to P8. Trident’s Roman Stanek finished ninth, as Boschung rounded out the points for Campos Racing in 10th.

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KEY QUOTE – Jack Doohan, Invicta Virtuosi Racing

“Just won the Feature Race in Spa starting P11, so super happy. Got pretty lucky with the timing of the Safety Car, but nevertheless we were one of the strongest on track yesterday and today. Super grateful for this and looking forward to having a little bit of a reset over the summer break before coming back in Zandvoort.”


Entering the race with a six-point deficit to Frederik Vesti, Théo Pourchaire now holds a 12-point advantage. Regaining the lead of the Drivers’ Championship, he increases his tally to 168 points to Vesti’s 156. Ayumu Iwasa remains third, but victory has elevated Jack Doohan into fourth, only four points behind the DAMS driver. Victor Martins completes the top five on 120 points.

ART Grand Prix have started to strengthen their hold on the Teams Standings on 288 points. PREMA Racing sit 30 points back in second, whilst Rodin Carlin’s best weekend of the season moves them above DAMS into third on 176.


The Formula 2 action resumes after a three-week summer break, with the 2023 field heading to Zandvoort for Round 12 from 25-27 August.