CEO Bruno Michel looks back at the fifth round of racing and picks out his key topics from Silverstone. He discusses the new Championship leader, the Formula 1 academy drivers, and talks about Formula 2’s newest race winner.
BACK ON TOP
Since the start of the season, Callum Ilott has been fighting at the front with impressive consistency. He has the pace in qualifying, but also in the races. In the first weekend in Silverstone, he had a few issues, but the second time around, he was unbeatable in Quali and in the feature race. He has taken the lead of the championship, with some margin. He is currently the man to beat!
IN THE REAR VIEW MIRROR
Whilst Ilott sits on top of the Championship, the competition remains not too far behind., starting with Christian Lundgaard. Apart from a pointless round in Budapest, the rookie already has one win, three podiums and two fastest laps to his name. I am not surprised to see him lying second in the Standings. His mature drive, combined with his natural speed, makes him a contender for this season’s title.
Last weekend was also a great one for Jack Aitken and Campos with a double podium finish, which is never an easy thing to accomplish in F2. It’s nice to see that they can fight at the front again.
Finally, I wanted to highlight Louis Delétraz’ consistency: in Silverstone we saw him and Charouz make a step forward with the Swiss fighting for big points in both races. He has moved up to fifth in the Championship. 47 points cover the Top nine drivers. It could all have changed again after Barcelona!
MAKING F1 TEAMS PROUD
Both podiums last weekend featured three racers from three different young drivers’ programmes. On Saturday, Ferrari (Ilott), Renault (Lundgaard) and Williams (Aitken) saw their protégés clinch trophies, while on Saturday, Red Bull claimed victory with Yuki Tsunoda ahead of Ferrari (Schumacher) and Williams (Aitken again). It’s really nice to see F1 overalls on our podiums and it proves F2’s strong link with F1.
I’m very pleased that rookie Tsunoda added his name to the list of this year’s race winners. He’s the eighth driver to do so in ten races. His first season in F2 is quite impressive with a win, three podiums and a pole position. He knows that with a little bit more consistency, he can stay in the title fight.
SAME, BUT DIFFERENT
Racing back to back at the same track does not mean that the results will be the same. Together with Pirelli, we decided to select different tyre compounds for events taking place at the same venue. Unlike the first one at Silverstone, last weekend saw the teams go for the Option/Prime strategy. That was the winning decision when using the soft tyres mixed with the hard compounds.
MORE FRUSTRATIONS FOR GELAEL
Sean Gelael’s unbelievable bad luck struck again last weekend. Since Round 1, through no fault of his team, his car has been riddled with mechanical issues that have ruined their season. It’s very frustrating for us and reflects badly on the championship that those failures keep happening, and that Mecachrome have not been able to fix them so far. I am really hoping that come Round 6 in Barcelona, Gelael will be able to take part to the races and fight with the rest of the field.