Maranello – The seventh round of the FIA Formula 2 Championship, the mid-point of the season, took place at Silverstone, UK this weekend. At his home race, Callum Ilott was a consistent top ten runner, finishing in the points in both races. Ilott was sixth in a closely contested qualifying, in which Mick Schumacher was 13th and Giuliano Alesi was 15th.
Race-1. Ilott was involved in a closely fought battle, but then he rather lost out when it was time for the compulsory pit stop. “The drivers with whom I was fighting had their pits before my team’s in the pit lane, so that when I was set to leave my pit after the tyre change, I had to let them by so as not to risk a penalty for an unsafe release,” explained Callum. “When the gaps are so small it’s all part of the game, but at least finishing eighth meant I would start Race 2 from pole position.”
Race-2. Ilott didn’t make the most of starting from the top slot. “I’m still not sure what happened at the start,” he said. “For the first few metres, everything seemed normal, but then I got excessive wheelspin and I lost several places. My pace was good and I began a long fight with Nick De Vries for third place, but I never had a real chance to attack him. I’m disappointed not to finish on the podium, but I still scored plenty of points and more importantly, we seem to have found an improvement in race pace.”
Mick. Schumacher also finished in the points in the second race at Silverstone. Race 1 however was unexpectedly challenging for the German. “I got a good start, but at turn 3, I was hit by another car and I ended up down the escape road,” explained Mick. “I rejoined, but I was last. At that point, we decided to pit for the tyre change as early as possible and the strategy paid off, given that we managed to cross the finish line in eleventh place.”
Another fight back. Schumacher was again faced with an unexpected fight up the order in the second race, eventually finishing sixth. “In the fights in the opening laps, I had to run wide off the track when I was battling with Nicholas Latifi. The car was hit quite badly and from then on, the DRS didn’t work. In the second part of the race I had to deal with the tyres going off significantly, but in the end I managed to finish sixth. In race 1, we made up eight places and in the second, five, which proves we had a very good race pace. Now, it will be very important to concentrate on qualifying well, which is always a key to having a strong weekend.”
Unlucky. Giuliano Alesi had a weekend to forget in England, being an innocent victim of collisions in both races. In the first, Giuliano was just outside the points thanks to a great start, but during his pit stop, a problem saw his car stop in pit lane, which compromised his chances of finishing in the points. In the second race, Alesi started from the ninth row of the grid and was hit by Arjun Maini on lap 2, which led to Giuliano’s immediate retirement.