Eng bounces back with Brands Hatch victory

Eng celebrates
Austrian takes third win of season while Stoneman and Palmer collide

Philipp Eng claimed his third victory of the season at Brands Hatch in a race that will also be remembered for a clash between championship rivals Jolyon Palmer and Dean Stoneman.

Starting from second, Eng kept position away from the line as polesitter Kazim Vasiliauskas began to edge into the distance. Behind the lead duo Jolyon Palmer had come from fifth to third, with Dean Stoneman also moving up from seventh on the grid into fifth.

Gladdis and Stoneman traded places on two occasions during the opening lap, with Stoneman eventually getting into fourth around the outside at Surtees.

The key moment of the race happened on lap four when Stoneman tried to dive down the inside of Palmer at Paddock Hill Bend. As Stoneman drew alongside, the pair’s front wheels touched and Palmer was fired off into the gravel and out of the race.

Stoneman continued but the incident allowed Tom Gladdis to slip by and back into third, which became second at the halfway stage of the race as race leader Kazim Vasiliauskas retired with gearbox issues.

The front trio remained separated by less than 1.5s for the remainder of the race, with Gladdis coming under the most pressure as Stoneman attempted a late pass. The young Briton had kept six of his eight boosts in reserve however, allowing him to hang on to take second – his best ever result in Formula Two.

Eng ultimately profited from the squabble behind, eventually finishing half a second clear – which was as comfortable a margin as the Austrian had enjoyed throughout the 24 lap contest.

Behind Gladdis and Stoneman, Will Bratt put the seal on another solid weekend with a relatively quiet drive to fourth. Nicola De Marco headed a gaggle of cars in the fight for fifth as the Italian confirmed his return to form by completing his second double-points scoring weekend in a row.

Despite briefly moving into third off the line, Sergey Afanasiev ran wide at Hawthorn on the opening lap during a battle with Palmer and the Russian was quickly shuffled down the order. The Lukoil-backed racer recovered, but could only manage sixth at the finish.

Mihai Marinescu held a one second advantage over Armaan Ebrahim to claim seventh while Briton Jack Clarke improved five positions during the race to finish ninth.

Ivan Samarin scored the final championship point in tenth, completing his best ever weekend in Formula Two after scoring his maiden podium yesterday.

The stewards are investigating the Stoneman/Palmer incident but, as it stands, Stoneman has moved into a ten point championship lead while Eng’s win means he jumps Will Bratt and moves back into third overall.


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