FIA Formula 2: Hello and welcome to the Press Conference of the top three finishes for the FIA Formula 2 Championship Sprint Race here in Imola. In third place we have Joshua Duerksen for AIX Racing taking his first podium, in second we have Gabriel Bortoleto from Invicta Racing and on the top step is Isack Hadjar from Campos Racing. Isack back-to-back Feature Race wins for you, how tough was that one under pressure today?

Isack Hadjar: It was the toughest race of my career honestly. I had a good first stint behind Oliver (Bearman) felt the car was pretty good. I had a good pit stop as well. From there I managed to take the lead, Gabriel was putting the pressure on. He was really quick. He caught me, there was a three second gap at one point, but he caught me. Then I pulled away again a little but, after I made a mistake. The last few laps he was just in my gearbox, so I had to defend. It is good that I can be on the top step.

FIA Formula 2: You have said before that you have had the pace but not always the results to show for it. What’s changed, is it just luck or have you done something differently that has led to the results coming through?

Hadjar: I think if you look at the start of the season, it was not my fault at all. You can notcannot predict a mechanical failure or an incident. Not every incident but I mean we lost a lot of points in the first round. We are now making up for it. I think that it is part of the Championship, you have highs and lows and right now it is definitely a high. We have really good momentum, and I can’t wait to be in Monaco next week.

FIA Formula 2: Back-to-back Feature Race wins, you are now nine points off the Championship lead right back in the fight. Did you expect to close the gap so quickly after the start of the season?

Hadjar: I mean yes. I was really mad yesterday. I had a good start and the opportunity to take good points, especially with how good the car was. Being in the gravel after doing nothing and watching all the guys grabbing points is really painful. To make up for it, as you say it is just nine points, it’s not a lot. It is an unbelievable feeling.

FIA Formula 2: Well done on today, Gabriel coming to you, second today after starting from pole. Was it just a case of the start costing you the win today?

Gabriel Bortoleto: I don’t like to say it that way. The start, it happened. I don’t know what would have happened even if I had had the best start of my life I still might not have won, I can’t predict what might have happened. The pace was there, obviously if you have a better start the chance of being fast, of fighting for the win, or being the lead car after the pit stop would be bigger, yes. The pace was there, but Isack was very quick. I couldn’t overtake him because I didn’t have an advantage of pace compared to him like we had to the others. I think we finished 13 seconds ahead of P3. I would say that if he had done the opposite, he would have the one putting pressure on me, it’s the same thing.

FIA Formula 2: As Isack said, you were on his gearbox in those final laps, was there ever a time you thought that you could have made a move or was the risk too great?

Bortoleto: I didn’t score many points at the beginning of the season, so I didn’t want to risk anything stupid. I had a contact with him in Bahrain that was my fault, so I didn’t want to try again and finish one of his races. If I had the opportunity to go for a move in a safe way, risky way but at the same time something that I knew he would respect me then I would have tried it but there was not a gap that I could go for. When he made a mistake in the chicane, in that moment if I was a little bit closer, I would have been able to try at the end of the straight. That lap he was very fast around the other corners but because he had made the mistake in that exact corner he didn’t lose much lap time. It was very close, toughest race of my life. I didn’t make a single mistake. Maybe a little bit more curb here or there but no big mistakes. Still, I was not able to win so hat’s off.

FIA Formula 2: You mentioned the gap to third place, but we had a lot of drivers on the alternate strategy. Were you aware of those and did you think that you might come under any pressure in the closing laps from them?

Bortoleto: Honestly, the only time I looked in the mirror was when I came out of the pits and Isack had hotter tyres than me. But truly I was so focused on catching him that I didn’t look once in my mirror during the whole race. The only time I realised the gap was when my engineer told me that we were 12 or 13 seconds ahead of P3. At some point I thought that maybe he crashed or had a problem because it is quite difficult to pull a gap like this in a small amount of laps. But it wasn’t that we were just fast Isack and I. We were too focused, me and him on making the perfect lap after perfect lap. When I checked the dash, I normally don’t, but I think every lap I was doing 1:31.8’s for six or seven laps. I was thinking ‘man this is difficult I can’t go faster than that’.

FIA Formula 2: Well done to you, Josh what a way to score your first points with your first podium, how good does that feel?

Joshua Duerksen: Yeah, really good. To get my first points and my first podium at the same time is a really great feeling. In Jeddah on the track, I finished in the points but sadly a penalty took the points away. In Australia I had a feeling I would score there but then I had a crash. Yesterday I thought I might get points but sadly the big crash happened in front of me, and I couldn’t avoid it. So, this was a great come back. I am so happy and really thankful to the team, to my family. These guys were just way too quick. I was managing my gap with Antonelli, I saw we had the same pace. From there on I was trying to keep the tyres alive. To catch these guys was quite difficult.

FIA Formula 2: You mentioned yesterday where you were starting, you qualified well, you were quick all weekend, what has been the key to your pace this weekend in Imola?

Duerksen: I think it is the hard work we are doing behind the scenes. The team is really working hard, myself as well. It’s the hard work they are putting in. It is a new team name now, new motivations are here. I think that is the key, the preparation we have done, the work we have done. Of course, we want to keep going like this.

FIA Formula 2: Do you think you can continue from here on then given this weekend, you must be excited to get to Monaco next weekend?

Duerksen: Of course, Monaco is always special. I think we will improve step by step, race by race, this way a really great weekend, a promising weekend. We have to look at the other tracks because it can vary a lot. Imola went well but we have to see on the next one.

FIA Formula 2: Congratulations well done this weekend, I look forward to Monaco next week.