P2 for Luca in Barcelona race 1


P2 for Luca in Barcelona race 1

Russian Time's Luca Ghiotto drove a fine race in Spain to finish second to pole position man Charles Leclerc in the 37-lap Circuit de Catalunya feature race, with Briton Oliver Rowland completing the podium finishers.

Team mate Artem Markelov produced another attacking drive from 13th on the grid after his fire extinguisher discharged during qualifying. Starting on the harder option tyre with the intention of a long opening stint, Markelov's strategy was compromised by a VSC followed by full Safety Car period, allowing those who had already pitted to close back up, but he still managed to finish eighth, claiming Sunday's Sprint Race pole, as well as the additional points for fastest lap.

Luca Ghiotto: «I managed to lead by taking the inside line into Turn 4 on the opening lap but ran a little wide on exit and Charles re-passsed me. I then lost a bit too much time managing my tyres in the opening stint. I was quicker than Charles at the end of the race on the prime tyre, but not enough to catch him. But the car was great and it's another good result for the championship.»

Artem Markelov: «I made up three places on the first lap and was going well until the Safety Car. For the second consecutive race I got the points for fastest lap and I'm still in strong contention, just two points behind Luca in the championship. I will start from pole in tomorrow's race and hopefully can score more strong points.»

Svetlana Strelnikova (Team principal): «We ran the cars on differing strategies with Luca starting on the option tyre and Artem on the prime. Luca drove a strong race, balancing attack with the need to preserve the tyres, while Artem did well to score six points from 13th on the grid. Those points keep Russian Time at the top of the Teams' Championship, three clear of Prema. We look forward to another strong performance tomorrow.»

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