Artem wins in Austria race 2!
The Austrian GP-supporting F2 sprint race was a tour de force for Russian Time with Artem Markelov leading every lap from pole position and claiming the additional points for fastest lap. Team mate Luca Ghiotto turned in a fantastic drive to finish fourth from 14th position on the grid!
Markelov, who finished eighth from 14th on the grid in Saturday's feature race, converted his reverse grid pole, but then had to contend with an opening lap Safety Car after Raffaele Marciello hit a stationary Nabil Jeffri on the grid.
Artem judged the restart well and then controlled the pace throughout the 28-lap race, setting a strong 1m16.119s fastest lap with seven to go. Alexander Albon finished runner-up with championship contender Oliver Rowland third.
Artem Markelov: «I'm happy with today's win and 21 points from the weekend after a bit of a disastrous qualifying. We achieved our target of getting up to eighth place on Saturday to get the sprint race pole and today's race was really strong: my start was good, so was the restart and I was able to control the pace to make sure Albon and Rowland did not get within DRS range. I was also
able to set the fastest lap without taking too much out of the tyres. Thanks to the team for such a strong car. It's a great boost for Silverstone next week.»
Luca Ghiotto: «I said yesterday that the car had strong pace and today I was able to prove that. I picked up three places on the first lap and was into the top 10 by lap 6. I survived some contact with Malja and then enjoyed some good overtakes: I went inside Visoiu and Latifi at Turn 4, King at Turn 3 and then Fuoco at Turn 4 again. When you make up 10 places with no tyre strategy involved, I think you have to be happy!»
Svetlana Strelnikova (Team principal): «Great races from both drivers! Artem got everything right and is just three points behind Rowland's second place in the drivers' championship. Luca's extra eight points for a magnificent fighting fourth position has kept us strongly in the teams' fight as well, just nine points behind Prema and DAMS, who are tied on 174 points. Roll on Silverstone!»
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