Baku race 1
An eventful Baku F2 feature race saw Tadasuke Makino finish ninth after stalling on the grid and having to start from the pitlane. Artem Markelov started 15th after a troubled practice/qualifying day and got as high as fourth before ulimately retiring six laps from the end with an engine failure.
Markelov made up five places on the opening lap and and then pitted eight laps into the 29-lap race to go onto the prime Pirelli compound. Once the madatory pit stops had been made, Artem ran seventh and improved on that by demoting Nirei Fukuzumi. The second Safery Car of the race came on lap 18 when Roy Nissany hit the wall. That put Artem back with the leaders but a typically eventful restart with cold tyres/brakes brought a lock-up and a trip down the Turn 1 escape road. With track position conceded, Russian Time pitted Markelov again to go back onto the option Pirellis in the hope of another Safety Car, but shortly afterwards his race ended in clouds of smoke.
Alexander Albon took the win ahead of Jack Aitken and Antonio Fuoco.
Tadasuke Makino: «After some penalties from yesterday I was starting in the top 10, so the problem on the grid was a real shame. As expected it was an eventful race with two Safety Cars but I managed to keep out of trouble and improve my pace throughout. In the end, I missed out on the Sprint race pole by just one position.”
Artem Markelov: «Despite the starting position we knew that we could have some opportunities today and the Safety Car for Nissany brought me back into contention. The re-start was a bit chaotic and even after the lock-up I couldn’t get the car turned in because someone came down my inside. I will have to try to do it all again tomorrow.”
Svetlana Strelnikova (Team principal): «Tadasuke having to start from the pit lane was a pity but he drove intelligently to finish in the top 10. It looked like the race was coming back to Artem so the Turn 1 moment was frustrating but ultimately he suffered a car failure anyway.”
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