Oliver Bearman took the sprint F2 race win in Baku from Frederik Vesti in chaotic end, as Jak Crawford was third.
The sprint F2 race start in Baku saw a bit of a mayhem off the line where pole-sitter Richard Verschoor hit the barrier at Turn 1 and touched Carlin’s Zane Maloney to cause a puncture. Maloney already was hit by ART’s Victor Martins off the line.
The incident was under investigation as the chaos allowed MP Motorsport’s Dennis Hauger to take the lead from sixth ahead of Martins and MP Motorsport’s Jehan Daruvala, who gained couple of places too but a moment almost had him out of the race too.
Hitech GP’s Jak Crawford got close to him due to it but couldn’t pass with Prema’s Frederik Vesti in fifth from Campos’ Ralph Boschung, ART’s Theo Pourchaire and Carlin’s Enzo Fittipaldi in the Top 8 points position, with Prema’s Oliver Bearman in ninth.
Both Vesti and Pourchaire gained a place when the safety car was deployed for Boschung, who tapped the wall to stop in the castle section. It was Hauger leading Martins, Daruvala, Vesti, Crawford, Pourchaire, Bearman and Fittipaldi in points places.
The lead stayed with Hauger despite Martins keeping up with him after being cleared of investigation. Daruvala, though, had Vesti on his tail with Bearman lining up as well after clearning both Pourchaire and Crawford to gain track position.
After few laps of try, Vesti got pass Daruvala with Bearman following suit on the next lap to be third and fourth. The Indian was fifth from Crawford, Pourchaire and Maini, who cleared Fittipaldi for the final point as DAMS’ Ayumu Iwasa retired with a DRS issue.
It was going rather smoothly until the late safety car for PHM Charouz’s Roy Nissany’s crash. The re-start was chaos as both Hauger and Martins clipped the Turn 1 tyre barrier which caught out Daruvala after a touch with Bearman and smashed into Martins.
The Turn 1 also caught out Pourchaire, DAMS’ Arthur Leclerc and Virtuosi’s Jack Doohan. It gave Vesti the lead from Bearman, but the Brit got him just when the safety car was deployed. It ended under it with Bearman winning from Vesti in Prema 1-2.
Crawford was third eventually from Maini and Fittipaldi in the Top 5. The chaos allowed Van Amersfort’s Juan Manuel Correa in sixth from Trident’s Clement Novalak and Hitech GP’s Isack Hadjar in the Top 8 points places, with Trident’s Roman Stanek, Virtuosi’s Amaury Cordeel and PHM Charouz’s Brad Benavides rounding 11 F2 finishers.
#F2 #AzerbaijanGP Sprintrace results. #MsportXtra @F2Inside pic.twitter.com/gpAJqXdptF
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Hauger hits the wall out of Turn 1
Martins hits the wall, and Daruvala crashes underneath him
Pourchaire and Leclerc run wide but avoid the wall
Doohan spins at Turn 1
Vesti runs wide, Bearman takes P1 seconds before the Safety Car!
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— Formula 2 (@Formula2) April 29, 2023
UPDATE: Following the Baku Sprint Race, Isack Hadjar has been assigned a five-second time penalty. The Hitech Pulse-Eight driver was found to have overtaken Jack Doohan before the control line at the second Safety Car restart on Lap 19. As a result, the Frenchman drops from P8 to P11 in the final classification. It also promotes Trident’s Roman Stanek to eighth and the final points-paying position in the Sprint Race.
Here’s full result: https://www.fia.com/sites/default/files/decision-document/2023%20Baku%20Event%20-%20F2%20Race%201%20-%20final%20classification.pdf