Enzo Fittipaldi put in a stellar drive to score a P7 finish after starting from the seventh row of the grid in 14th. The Brazilian put in a late-race charge on the medium tyres to secure Rodin Carlin some points in the Feature Race, but there was even more on the table according to the man himself.

Bearing down on the fight for fourth that included Ayumu Iwasa, Dennis Hauger and Richard Verschoor, Fittipaldi was sizing up a few more moves. Unfortunately for him, the chequered flag came just a few hundred metres too soon. Despite missing out on a top five finish, Fittipaldi says that the speed the team showed was much closer to internal expectations.

“We were flying at the end,” Fittipaldi said. “I think I was the fastest man on medium tyres. I made some very good overtakes and almost got P6 on the line. I think I just needed up to Turn 1 to get the place. I would have had him with one more lap or maybe less than that.

FEATURE RACE: Vesti battles to brilliant Jeddah win

“It was a difficult race starting from the back but we’re going recover and bounce back. It’s a good feeling to finish in Jeddah with some good points. Still 12 rounds to go, we’ll keep our heads down and continue the hard work.”

Starting further back than he would have liked, Fittipaldi focused on the bigger picture rather than fighting hard for early track position. His level-headed approach paid off in the latter stages as he unleashed his pace on the medium tyres.

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Though the race is always easier to strategise in hindsight, the Rodin Carlin driver says his team did well to maximise the result with the conventional strategy.

“It was a very action-packed race. There was a lot going on at the start, I just knew from the first couple of laps we had the pace. I wasn’t making any crazy manoeuvres or defending like crazy because I was plying the long game. I knew throughout the race I was going to have good pace, I just needed to put clean laps in.

“I think both strategies worked. Honestly, I think my pace was so good on the medium that I would have probably finished higher up if I started on mediums. It is what it is, it’s a gamble at the end of the day. We started on supersofts because we thought there was going to be a Safety Car but there wasn’t one. In general, everyone’s strategy was probably equal because there was no Safety Car. We had good pace and were able to make up a few positions.”

Looking forward to Round 3, Fittipaldi says that the result is a good step for the team after a difficult opening two weekends. Focus will be on one-lap pace ahead of Formula 2’s first ever visit to Australia.

“It’s been a tough start to the season, but we’re working really hard to make a step forward in Qualifying. That’s our goal for the next race in Melbourne.”