Prema’s Nyck de Vries took a lights-to-flag win in the feature race of the 2018 FIA Formula 2 Championship at Spa-Francorchamps on Saturday.
The Dutchman started on pole and led every lap to register his third win of the season after he was unchallenged for the majority of the race. He also survived a safety car period as most of the drama took place behind him.
De Vries finished 3.1s ahead of Carlin’s Sergio Sette Camara after the Brazilian picked up ART Grand Prix’s George Russell at the start of the 25-lap race with the British driver then unable to fight back.
In fact, Russell came under slight pressure from Carlin’s Lando Norris at the re-start but the Mercedes junior held his line to claim a podium finish with Norris finishing fourth. Norris had cleared Campos’ Luca Ghiotto at the start to get himself into fourth place.
The Italian also lost out to DAMS’ Alexander Albon, who gave Norris a hard time along with Charouz Racing System’s Antonio Fuoco. But then Albon started to struggle slightly and lost places to drop to the lower half of the Top 10.
The Thai driver then fought back to finish fifth, only 0.5s behind Norris. Russian Time’s Artem Markelov, meanwhile, had another fine outing as the Russian managed to beat Ghiotto to sixth on the finish line in a photo finish.
In an opposite strategy of medium to soft, Markelov benefited hugely due to the safety car. However, Ghiotto defended his position well from the Renault junior until the final lap and the finish line.
DAMS’ Nicholas Latifi made the most of the opportunity to finish eighth and secure a reverse-grid pole with Arden’s Maximilian Gunther and Campos’ Roy Nissany completing the Top 10 – the Israeli driver scoring his first points in F2 career.
Just outside the points was ART’s Jack Aitken who had to make up ground after low-key qualifying. Meanwhile, the Charouz Racing System drivers Fuoco and Louis Deletraz were at the receiving end as they collided at Turn 8 – the incident was put under investigation.
Position 11-18: Aitken, Tadasuke Makino, Alessio Lorandi, Arjun Maini, Dorian Boccolacci, Sean Gelael, Fuoco and Deletraz. DNF: Ralph Boschung and Nirei Fukuzumi.