FIA Formula 2: Many congratulations to the top three Qualifiers for the FIA Formula 2 Feature Race here at Yas Marina Circuit. In third place Guanyu Zhou for UNI-Virtuosi, in second place Jack Doohan for MP Motorsport, and taking his fifth consecutive pole position, Oscar Piastri for PREMA. High five, Oscar! Many congratulations, what an extraordinary run of pole positions you've been on. How good does this feel, how good was the lap?
Oscar Piastri: It was a good lap for sure, I think all day we've been quite comfortable. We were quickest in practice and then I think we're quickest throughout the whole of Quali as well. The car felt very good, it felt like all of my laps were quite good as well. Very, very solid day, and obviously the four extra points makes tomorrow a little bit easier as well.
FIA Formula 2: Well as you say, those extra four points could help you clinch the championship in Sprint Race 1 tomorrow, how much are you thinking about that now?
Piastri: Well, the sooner I can do it the better. I'm pretty comfortable with my points gap, I think Robert now has to win every race or something like that so I'm pretty comfortable with that, but the quicker I can do it and make it official then the better.
FIA Formula 2: Final one from me Oscar, can we get your thoughts on the new track layout and do you think it will be possible to overtake in the race?
Piastri: I think the changes are interesting, both good and bad. I think the new Turn 5 will possibly be a bit better for overtaking in the races, you can potentially take a few different lines through there and get a run down the new Turn 6. The new Turn 9 to drive, for me, it's a lot better than the previous section that was there because the previous section was pretty tight and twisty and very off-camber. But in terms of an overtaking point of view, I don't really understand the change because it's going to be worse for overtaking, so we'll see. Overall I think it's a bit nicer to drive, but not necessarily better for overtaking.
FIA Formula 2: Best of luck for the rest of the week. Jack, let's come to you, now that was an outstanding performance by you. A front row start in only your second formula 2 Qualifying session, how are you feeling right now?
Jack Doohan: Feeling obliviously good, happy to be P2. A little bit disappointed because the time was coming on the second push and we had a little bit of an issue in the pit lane so I only got one push lap, but hey, who knows what it could have been. Maybe the first push was going to be the one. I didn't really have any expectations. Practice was good with P2, but I was P8 in Jeddah and then finished 16th in Qualifying so I was a little bit nervous that I was going to go backwards in Quali. We made some good adjustments to keep the car in the window for Quali and I'm happy to be P2.
FIA Formula 2: Jack have you been surprised how quickly you've got up to speed with Formula 2 machinery?
Doohan: To be honest, when I was in Jeddah I didn't notice for outright speed too much of a difference, but there was a little bit to get used to in terms of the turbo and you have to focus on the carbon brakes but other than that a car is a car. I think if you're good enough you can get to grips with it quite quickly. You push it to its limit and where that limit is, you stay within that, but I think us top racing drivers should be able to adapt quickly anyway.
FIA Formula 2: So what are your goals for the rest of this weekend, and the Feature Race in particular?
Doohan: I don't really know, I don't have any goals. This still isn't really my time at the moment, so to be honest I just want to gain more experience and it's good to do that at the front so I can learn how these boys race, and how they manage the races too. So it's good to be within a good crowd. Hopefully, if everything goes well any result is going to be a bonus, but the focus is for next year.
FIA Formula 2: Good luck, well done Jack. Guanyu coming to you now. Great lap by you as well, how important is it for you to end the season on a high?
Guanyu Zhou: From my side, I would like to enjoy my last weekend in Formula 2, and I think coming back with a strong result would be the most important part. The results have been missing in the last two rounds, so I'm very happy to finally be back here. Particularly how Free Practice went this morning, it wasn't really strong because I saw the guys at the top and we were quite a step down to them in the lap times, but we did make really good progress throughout Qualifying and from practice. As well from the two sets of tyres in Qualifying I did improve quite a lot, and I was quite happy to at least get one purple sector. Apart from that, I think we're in a good spot for the Feature Race and we just have to be a bit more patient for the first two races.
FIA Formula 2: As you said you improved the car a lot, 8th after your first run in Quali and of course 3rd now. Where were those improvements?
Zhou: It's a bit in the car, you know. You have your first feeling on these options tyres and then you inform your engineers about what can be adapted or adjusted for the final run. Then you go out, you have a bit more of a projection about how the car will behave throughout the lap and then you try to put every sector together. This time was the case, I was able to put the sectors together. In Jeddah that wasn't the case, I missed the last sector by over three tenths. I think because the top three or top five were so close together, apart from Oscar who was a bit further down. Every small margin and small improvement matters in this series.
FIA Formula 2: Did grip levels change much during the session?
Zhou: It the session between the two sets not too much, but of course from this morning it's a huge change. Not just because of the grip, also the temperature, everything is quite a big step forward and you have to adapt quite a lot.
FIA Formula 2: Guanyu, thank you best of luck to you as well for the rest of the weekend.