Thoughts from Bearman, Vesti and Crawford

FIA Formula 2: Many congratulations to the top three finishers of the FIA Formula 2 Sprint Race here in Baku. In third place, Jak Crawford for Hitech Pulse-Eight. In second place, Frederik Vesti for PREMA Racing and taking his first victory in FIA Formula 2, our winner Oliver Bearman, also for PREMA. Now Ollie, what an incredible race, I don't know how we begin to sum it up. Can you try for us?

Oliver Bearman: Yeah, I'll give it a go. It was a bit of a crazy race to be honest, like they always are here. Opening laps, I was just trying to keep my nose clean, which was kind of the goal. I just wanted to do the race and prepare for tomorrow really. Once it kind of opened up and everyone put a gap, we saw I had quite strong pace. I was able to come through a bit. The final Safety Car, we saw what happened there. So yeah, nice to come away with the win.

FIA Formula 2: Nice to come away with the win, just what does it mean to win your first race in FIA Formula 2?

Bearman: It’s just a Sprint race, but yeah, it was nice to win. Next goal is the Feature.

FIA Formula 2: And what were your expectations coming into the race today from P9 on the grid?

Bearman: They weren’t to win, but we said before the race that you can do anything in this track, so don't discount yourself. I just wanted to prepare for tomorrow, make sure we had good pace and it seemed like we did. So, I think we ticked that box.

FIA Formula 2: Just talk us through that final racing lap if you like. There was chaos at Turn 1, then you suddenly find yourself dicing for the lead with your teammate. What happened next?

Bearman: So, everyone was deep in Turn 1. I knew it, it happened in the past. It's really tough to keep temperature in the tyres in the Safety Car, so it was kind of expected. I just saw cars flying and I managed to avoid them, so that was Nice and I found myself in P2. I was fighting with Fred in the Sector 1. Of course, it's my teammate and it's only a Sprint Race, I did not want to risk everything, but I managed to get a good exit out of Turn 4 and just get ahead. The Safety Car helped me a bit by coming out just then.

FIA Formula 2: And Ollie, what have you learned today that’s going to help you in the Feature Race tomorrow?

Bearman: Yeah, I've learned that we had good pace, so that's good. I think we're kind of expecting that, we've been quite fast all weekend as a team and just consolidated the fact that the races are crazy. I didn't go forwards on the first lap let's say, despite all of the cars crashing, I kept the same position. So yeah, you don't need to take crazy risks. If you have the pace, the race is going to come to you.

FIA Formula 2: Alright, very well done to you, thank you Ollie. Fred coming to you now. How do you begin to sum that one up from your point of view?

Frederik Vesti: Well, it's a good race first of all. It's a 1-2 for PREMA, which is huge. It's only a Sprint Race, but it's still a very good result and I think we can all take a lot of confidence going towards tomorrow. And from my perspective, obviously it was annoying to be in the lead and then losing the lead just before the Safety Car. But it's racing, we were very close. And then, it's about staying out of trouble and scoring points. P1 and P2 made the mistakes and I was able to get the lead, and I was just trying to defend. I had also a bit cold tyres and just a bit of understeer.

FIA Formula 2: Tell us about your car, how good is the PREMA around here?

Vesti: Well, it's very good. It's been good for the last few races, which is really nice. We're really confident in the car. We had a strong Qualifying yesterday, which is good, but we know that in the races we are really fast. I think here in Baku, it just works out. It's about staying clean because we know we have the pace so we can actually move forward, which is really nice.

FIA Formula 2: And looking ahead to tomorrow's race from P4 on the grid, what are you hoping for?

Vesti: It's my best starting position so far this year, which is actually crazy to think because we have a good amount of points, we've already won in Jeddah. So yeah, I want to use what I learned today, obviously go for the win and see what happens.

FIA Formula 2: All right. Best of luck with that thank you. And Jak, well done to you. Second in Melbourne, on the podium again here, how was the race for you?

Jak Crawford: Chaotic. We had good pace in the end, but just struggled at the beginning, lost some positions to Frederik and Ollie. You know, once we started to get into a rhythm, the car was coming on nicely and feeling good. Just when I thought the race was settling down and it was going to be over, there's a Safety Car and all of a sudden on the exit of Turn 1, I found myself in third. So yeah, I'd say I got super lucky.

FIA Formula 2: You say the pace of the car wasn't there early on, what were the issues?

Crawford: I struggled quite a bit with traction for us and. Yeah, it was just really difficult at the beginning and we weren't able to really make up any ground and I lost the DRS on the second lap.

FIA Formula 2: So no DRS for the whole race?

Crawford: Well, I lost the one second gap.

FIA Formula 2: Look, let’s throw it ahead to tomorrow’s Feature Race. What can we expect from you?

Crawford: We should have a better car for tomorrow and I myself, I already know what I need to work on. So, starting seventh, my best starting spot for a Feature Race and it's time to score some Feature Race points for me. Just keep my nose clean like I did today and we'll see how it goes.

FIA Formula 2: Alright, best of luck with that. Thank you to all three of you.