Briton finishes ahead of Tuscher and Pommer to extend title lead
Luciano Bacheta continued his domination of the 2012 FIA Formula Two Championship by securing victory during today’s (Sunday) round four at Portimão, and becoming the first driver to win four consecutive races.
The 22-year-old moved into the lead on the opening lap from his third place grid slot, passing pole-sitter Mathéo Tuscher around the outside of Turn 3 and powering away until the chequered flag.
In a repeat of Saturday’s race, the Swiss teenager had kept the Brit honest for much of the race and staying within a one second margin, but he made a mistake at Turn 10 on the penultimate lap to take the pressure of Bacheta. Tuscher then fell into the clutches of third-placed Markus Pommer but he was able to hold on until the chequered flag with the German coming home to collect his maiden F2 podium and making up for the difficult opening round he endured at Silverstone.
Last year’s F2 runner-up Christopher Zanella finished fourth despite starting on the all Swiss front-row having been passed by the much quicker Pommer on lap seven going into Turn 1. Zanella, who remains in third place in the drivers‘ standings, then enjoyed a relatively quiet race unlike the scrap for fifth place going on behind him.
That was eventually won by Briton Dino Zamparelli who battled for much of the race with four other drivers with the positions changing all the time. In the end it was Daniel McKenzie who came away with sixth ahead of Hector Hurst to complete a trio of Brits. Saturday’s podium finisher Kevin Mirocha secured eighth ahead of Brazilian Victor Guerin who had earlier received a two-place grid penalty following an infringement during the morning’s qualifying session. Swiss driver Alex Fontana completed the top 10 while fellow countryman Mauro Calamia finished 11th to pick up his best result of the season so far.
Speaking afterwards Bacheta, who now enjoys a 46 point advantage, said: "From lap two I started to make the adjustments that I was making to the car in lap 18 yesterday so that puts that race into perspective. I was struggling throughout the whole race and just had masses of oversteer. It was my fault as I made a bad call on tyre pressures and I should have stuck with what we planned. But nevertheless I’m happy to have won again. It’s been quite mentally draining this weekend having Mathéo in my mirrors all the time and I was glad to see the chequered flag again."
The next rounds (five and six) of the 2012 FIA Formula Two Championship take place at Germany’s Nűrburgring on 25-27 May with full coverage on the official Formula Two website.
F2 Results: Portugal Race 2:
1. Luciano Bacheta, 22 laps
2. Mathéo Tuscher, +1.514s
3. Markus Pommer, +2.267s
4. Christopher Zanella, +6.425s
5. Dino Zamparelli, +19.249s
6. Daniel McKenzie, +20.319s
7. Hector Hurst, +20.722s
8. Kevin Mirocha, +21.733s
9. Victor Guerin, +22.563s
10. Alex Fontana, +29.288s
F2 Championship Standings – After Round 4:
1. Luciano Bacheta, 100pts
2. Mathéo Tuscher, 54pts
3. Christopher Zanella, 42pts
4. Alex Fontana, 37pts
5. Markus Pommer, 37pts
6. Mihai Marinescu, 31pts
7. Daniel McKenzie, 30pts
8. Dino Zamparelli, 24pts
9. Kevin Mirocha, 19pts
10. Hector Hurst, 15pts