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Silverstone Auto GP: Kimiya Sato triumphs in race two

Kimiya Sato wins Silverstone Auto GP race 2013Kimiya Sato extended his lead in the Auto GP drivers' standings by taking his third win of the season at Silverstone.

From third on the reversed-grid, the Formula 3 graduate grabbed the lead into the first corner and thereafter maintained it throughout.

Sato emerged from his penultimate lap pitstop with a one-second lead over Sergio Campana.

But the Italian was out of range to threaten a passing move, as Sato controlled his advantage to cross the finish 0.899 seconds ahead.

"Our strategy was to fit soft tyres from the start and go for maximum [performance] from the set-up," said Euronova driver Sato. "I'm pleased because yesterday [finishing sixth] was a bit disappointing."

Campana's second position for Ibiza promotes the former Italian Formula 3 champion back into second in the drivers' standings.

Compatriot Vittorio Ghirelli, who held second spot in the championship after Saturday's race one, was a first-lap retirement after being clouted into a spin by an over-optimistic Robert Visoiu at The Loop.

All the racing action as it happens on AUTOSPORT Race Centre Live

After a poor getaway, Campana recovered second place from polesitter Meindert van Buuren with a committed manoeuvre around the outside at Stowe on the opening lap.

Campana trailed Sato by 2.7s when he came in for his mandatory tyre change on lap six, leaving Sato with a huge advantage over van Buuren.

The Dutch rookie was swiftly in defensive mode, and resorted to a little weave along the pits straight to keep race one's on-the-road victor Kevin Giovesi from overtaking into Copse on lap four.

Narain Karthikeyan, Super Nova, Silverstone Auto GP 2013Van Buuren would slip to an eventual fifth, after Giovesi's Ghinzani team opted for a relatively early stop to exploit its man's pace.

The strategy worked as Giovesi claimed the final place on the podium from Narain Karthikeyan, who picked up the Saturday race one win thanks to the Lazurus GP2 racer's post-race penalty.

Auto GP debutant Giovesi's result was a fine reward for drive from 13th on the grid. Giovesi's GP2 rival Daniel de Jong completed the top six.

The race was reduced in distance by a lap, owing to an aborted first start when Fabrizio Crestani was unable to pull away from the grid cleanly.

NEWS UPDATE: Karthikeyan gets post-race penalty

Results - 13 laps:

Pos  Driver               Team            Time/Gap
 1.  Kimiya Sato          Euronova      23m55.312s
 2.  Sergio Campana       Ibiza           + 0.899s
 3.  Kevin Giovesi        Ghinzani        + 5.599s
 4.  Narain Karthikeyan   Super Nova      + 7.023s
 5.  Meindert van Buuren  Manor MP        + 9.303s
 6.  Daniel de Jong       Manor MP       + 12.551s
 7.  Maxim Snegirev       Virtuosi UK    + 13.820s
 8.  Tamas Pal Kiss       Zele           + 14.204s
 9.  Luciano Bacheta      Zele           + 16.531s
10.  Riccardo Agostini    Manor MP       + 18.104s
11.  Fabrizio Crestani    Ibiza          + 23.360s
12.  Yoshitaka Kuroda     Euronova       + 27.066s
13.  Francesco Dracone    Super Nova     + 41.096s
14.  Michele La Rosa      MLR 71         + 50.091s
15.  Andrea Roda          Virtuosi UK  + 1m12.047s


     Robert Visoiu        Ghinzani           1 lap
     Vittorio Ghirelli    Super Nova        0 laps
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