FIA F2: VICTORY IN MONACO
After a few difficult races, KENNOL is back on the podium of FIA Formula 2 World Championship, with a brilliant victory in Monaco Grand Prix. Artem Markelov, at the wheel of the #1 Team Russian Time race car literally fought his way through the pack of great young racers, who dream to shine in one of the most iconic race events in the World. But the talent and crazy moves of the Russian driver made the difference for the win this weekend.
▌ AN ACTION-PACKED RACE
The FIA Formula 2 World Championship arrived last week on what might be the Grail of any race car driver: the Monaco Grand Prix. Why such an atmosphere surrounding this race? Why so much pressure on the urban racetrack? Because it’s a tough one, with no margin for error, and almost no place to overtake. And because most mythical F1 legends put their name on the sacred trophy to this date: Fangio, Moss, Lauda, Senna, Prost, Schumacher, and most recent Champions such as Alonso, Raïkkönen, Hamilton, Vettel, or Rosberg.
Artem Markelov already shown great abilities. Here in Monaco, with a 1st victory, back in 2016. And earlier this season, with great moves in race, and a strong victory in Bahrain Grand Prix. But in-between, the races were difficult, as well as the qualifying sessions, due to a “bad” chassis… “We think we have a big problem with the balance of the car,” the Russian Time driver said. “We hope changing the car will fix it. There is something strange, hopefully we can improve it for Monaco.”
And indeed, the new chassis changed everything to the young driver’s performances.
Unable to qualify higher than 15th in the opening three rounds of the 2018 campaign, despite having only missed out on a top 10 spot twice in 2017, Markelov and his brand-new chassis found a well deserved 3rd place on the starting grid.
▌ A NEW HOPE FOR THE WORLD TITLE
The race started off immediately to an accident, as Fuoco drove straight across Ghiotto’s path and forced the Campos car into the barrier. Albon held onto the lead ahead of de Vries, with Markelov and Maini behind them. These four drivers exchanged the fastest lap of the race in the first part of the race. On lap 14, de Vries turned into the pit lane behind the Safety Car, but Albon, despite being in front, turned in too, a fraction of a second too late… The pit entry was too narrow and de Vries hit the rear of Albon, sending both cars to the “Abandon” part of the race sheet.
Markelov, who thus started pushing very hard, increased the lead on Maini to around eight seconds.
In the end, this action-packed race saw a fresh conclusion: Markelov turned around his fortunes after some bad races, while Gelael and Merhi could celebrate their first F2 podium. Due to other leaders making mistakes on the tricky Monaco race track, the KENNOL-sponsored car takes good points for the World Championship, and is now ranked 2nd in the fight for the 2018 title.
The FIA Formula 2 Championship will resume next time out from the 22-24 June at Le Castellet, France, a new venue for the World Championship.