Thoughts from Doohan, Martins and Vesti

FIA Formula 2: Welcome to the top three finishers of the FIA Formula 2 Feature Race. In third place, Frederik Vesti for PREMA Racing, in second place Victor Martins for ART Grand Prix, and taking his third win of the 2023 campaign, our winner Jack Doohan for Invicta Virtuosi Racing. Jack, very well done, lights-to -flag in your final Formula 2 race. It looked dominant from the outside, is that how it felt inside the car?

Jack Doohan: Yeah I think for the most part it was under control. I think looking back now the strategy was the safest one of option prime, but typically it's seemed that the prime option seemed quite a bit stronger, so it was crucial that we managed the tyre at the right part of the race to still have enough tyre left at the end to hold off a fast charging Victor who was quite quick on the soft tyre. Once the gap wasn't coming down so drastically I knew I could keep that pace and hold on for the win.

FIA Formula 2: Jack you laid the foundations of this at the start, you're away like a rocket ship. Talk us through it.

Doohan: The start was actually quite good. My reaction time was probably the best I've done in my career and I was just hoping that it wasn't less than 0.12, or whatever the limit is where they clarify it as a jumpstart because it was a really, really fine margin. It was a great getaway and it was nice to have a clean run into Turn 1 and I could do my own thing. Kush seemed to try to push for the first three or four laps but I knew that wasn't sustainable at that point for me so I was happy to be able to extend three or four more laps longer than the others.

FIA Formula 2: Jack your Formula 2 journey comes to an end here in Abu Dhabi, can you sum up your two seasons in F2 for us?

Doohan: It's been a bit of a rollercoaster for sure. Coming in this year, I wanted to make it my title fight year but the first five rounds, not scoring any points made it a little difficult. Round 6 after Monaco I was a good 79 points away from Théo and Fred, so to come back now with only a 40-point deficit is good. When it's been in our control, we've done the most we could but unfortunately, we just lost too much. You've got to be happy with what you can do and I'm stoked to go out like this.

FIA Formula 2: Very well done to you, Victor coming to you now. You fought hard, you took fastest lap, you've come away with your 10th podium in your rookie season. How was the car and was there anything more you could have done about Jack today?

Victor Martins: I don't know, when I saw the VSC I was a bit upset because it came a bit late. At that point, I was pushing hard trying to catch Jack but in the end he was quick enough to hold on in P1 so I was just trying to keep some clean laps and getting P2 for the Teams' Championship and rookie title. In the end, trying the opposite strategy is something we didn't do a lot this year so it was a nice experience to see what we can do and where can gain and what we can improve. To get a clean race, to end the season like that is good for my confidence, good for the team and good for my future.

FIA Formula 2: You are the highest placed rookie in the Championship this year. Sum up your first season in FIA Formula 2.

Martins: It's been quite tough. There have been some challenging moments, a lot of up and down moments throughout the season but from the point I started to understand the car and how to manage the races, how to manage Qualifying and the differences between the two, we were there fighting for pole positions, podiums and wins. In the end, I had a difficult first part of the season which cost a lot in terms of points and I think I'm close to being P2 in the second part of the Championship in terms of scoring points. I'm happy to end up like that, I know my goals for the future, and I learned a lot.

FIA Formula 2: Fred, coming to you, what a race from ninth to third. You were very determined. Sum it all up for us, how are you feeling now?

Frederik Vesti: I'm frustrated not to win the title, I've been fighting so hard this year and I've had some great races and a great Championship. I knew going into this race that the title was not lost today, the three rounds before this were incredibly tough and I lost the Championship lead back at Spa and didn't manage to do well in the Feature Races. This weekend I managed to put it together, we knew we had to do if we wanted a chance and we gave it absolutely everything. I think we proved this today coming from ninth to third and having some great battles which I truly enjoyed. It was a bit too close for comfort on the last lap. I'm just glad I got through it without crashing because it was a pretty big moment in T9.

FIA Formula 2: We saw a great battle between yourself and Théo as well. How did it feel to be battling with each other?

Vesti: I hoped not too much to battle with Théo and be ahead but I knew I would have a lot more pace in my tyres. I came out just behind him. I spent a bit too much time behind him and finished third, it was the absolute best we could do today with how the race panned out so I'm not disappointed. I can go to bed proud tonight. Obviously, I'm disappointed to not win the title but I have learnt so much throughout this year and I'm looking forward to taking that forward in my career.

FIA Formula 2: Best of luck with that Fred.