CEO Bruno Michel looks back at a wet and dry third round of the season and picks out his key topics from Imola.
Michel discussed Théo Pourchaire's win, Enzo Fittipaldi's emotional maiden podium, and the things you may have missed from Italy.
OUR FIRST 2022 DOUBLE RACE WINNER
It’s been a season of ups and downs for Théo Pourchaire so far, with the Frenchman now back in the lead of the Championship after a pointless second round in Jeddah. Pourchaire opted for the right strategy on Sunday in Imola to cross the finish line first, thus taking a second win in 2022. He is the only driver with two victories this season. Now on 52 points, he is back at the top of the Standings, 2 points ahead of Felipe Drugovich, having scored in only half of the races whereas the Brazilian has managed to score in every single one of them – the only driver to have done so.
AN EMOTIONAL FIRST PODIUM
It was quite an emotional parc fermé at the end of Imola’s Feature Race as Enzo Fittipaldi celebrated his maiden F2 podium finish, with second place from P15 on the grid! It was also Charouz Racing System’s first taste of champagne in 2022. Seeing Fittipaldi on the podium just few months after his 2021 accident in Jeddah was wonderful. It rewards his and Charouz’ hard work and it will be interesting to see if they can feature at the front more consistently as the season unfolds.
AS IT STANDS
Twelve points cover the top 5 in the Teams’ Championship as MP Motorsport leads the way, 2 points ahead of ART Grand Prix and Hitech Grand Prix. The Dutch team have been the most consistent squad, thanks to Felipe Drugovich, scoring in every race of the season so far. Meanwhile, Hitech have dropped from first to third, although they added a first 2022 pole position and a maiden 2022 Sprint Race win to their tally in Imola last week. Further down, Carlin and PREMA Racing stand fourth and fifth respectively. The British team unexpectedly failed to score any points in Italy whilst the reigning champions took 17.
Trident lead the rest of the pack after a pointless round, ahead of Campos Racing who enjoyed their first 2022 podium thanks to Ralph Boschung’s third place finish on Sunday. Uncharacteristically, Virtuosi Racing trail behind, following another challenging weekend. But I am sure they will be able to fight back at the top very soon.
WHAT YOU MAY HAVE MISSED…
Two drivers have scored their first F2 points last weekend, with Frederik Vesti and Clément Novalak. The two F3 graduates came into the new season with high hopes, but until Imola, they had failed to carry on their great 2021 form. This changed in Sunday’s Feature Race with P4 for the Frenchman and P6 for the Danish.
At this point in the season, we have more point scorers in the opening three rounds than any previous seasons, with a total of 20 drivers. Most noticeably, 19 drivers had taken points in 2021 after 3 events although the format had three races per race weekend…
Finally, we have a total of 10 different podium finishers out of 18 podium places, with three new names added to the list in Imola: Fittipaldi, Boschung and 2021 Formula 3 Champion Dennis Hauger. Who will be next?