Baku race 2
Tadasuke Makino drove a good race to finish 10th in the Baku sprint race taking into consideration a down-on-power engine that left him a sitting duck on Baku City Circuit’s 2.1km main straight. Without that, the young Japanese driver, who was sixth at the end of the first lap, looked well set to add to the two points he scored in the feature event.
The team had more engine issues with Artem Markelov’s car after a failure put him out of Saturday’s main event. With a new power unit installed overnight, Markelov was the latest to suffer the clutch difficulties that have plagued a number of drivers this year. After stalling on the grid and being started in the pitlane, Artem suffered a loss of engine power on the opening lap and was forced to retire the car. GP3 champion George Russell took his first F2 win.
Tadasuke Makino: «That was difficult because although the car felt good and I was very competitive in the tight city section, the low-down power delivery was not good and my top speed was also way down on my rivals. I could not use DRS properly and people were just driving past me in a straight line, which was pretty frustrating.”
Artem Markelov: «This was certainly a weekend to forget. It didn’t start well on Friday, which was down to me, but from that point on we had too many mechanical problems. The engine put me out of both races and the clutch is really difficult, more like a switch and hard to modulate, as we have seen with many drivers. It’s frustrating to leave here without scoring after the two podiums in Bahrain. Let’s hope we can bounce back in Barcelona.”
Svetlana Strelnikova (Team principal): «Consistency is an important element of challenging for a championship in a series where all races count, so it’s more than annoying to have problems in both races for Artem. Tadasuke had troubles too. He was sixth on the opening lap but dropped to 10th thanks to a top speed that was more than 10kph down on some of his rivals.”
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