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Race report

F2 Monza: Drugovich wins title despite DNF, Vips wins sprint race

Felipe Drugovich clinched the FIA Formula 2 title in Monza despite a first-lap retirement from the sprint race, with Juri Vips taking the victory.

Felipe Drugovich, MP Motorsport on the podium

Felipe Drugovich, MP Motorsport on the podium

Mark Sutton / Motorsport Images

The MP Motorsport driver’s race was ended at Turn 5 after a collision with Amaury Cordeel broke his suspension, leaving him to return to the pitlane to watch the title battle unfold.

But with title rival Theo Pourchaire finishing in last place, having run wide on lap 14 as he tried to pass Liam Lawson for tenth before receiving a penalty, Drugovich's margin remain untouched to claim the title.

He is the first Brazilian to win the main feeder series title since Bruno Junqueira took the F3000 title in 2000.

Vips started third for Hitech behind Frederik Vesti (ART) and Logan Sargeant, with the Carlin driver having a poor start and dropping behind the leading trio, with Ayumu Iwasa moving up to third.

Further back, Olli Caldwell (Campos) and Charouz driver Tatiana Calderon crashed at Turn 2 in an incident which will be investigated after the race, prompting a safety car.

As racing resumed on lap 4, Vips snatched the lead from Vesti at Turn 1, which the Estonian would not relinquish and, two laps later, Vips was 1.4s clear of Vesti by lap 6, ahead of Iwasa, Sargeant and Prema’s Jehan Daruvala.

Although Vesti attempted to put pressure on Vips later on, the Hitech driver had much more pace and was able to ease to victory - his first win of the season despite several near misses over 2022.

Vesti held on to take second, his first podium since Paul Ricard, while Daruvala finished third in his seventh podium of the season.

Sargeant took fourth, having lined up second, while Richard Verschoor finished fifth for Trident ahead of Liam Lawson and Jack Doohan.

Verschoor and Marcus Armstrong had battled valiantly - and the Kiwi at one took sixth from Verschoor at the inside of Parabolica, but the Dutchman was able to climb back ahead and leave Armstrong as prey for Lawson and Doohan.

This took place as Ayumu Iwasa began a heady descent down the order, and the order in the midfield continued to swap and change as Doohan made it past Iwasa for seventh at Parabolica.

Lawson then passed Iwasa under breaking at Turn 1 for eighth, before Beckmann and Hauger also passed the DAMS driver as he made a mistake at Turn 2, before also being handed a five-second penalty.

Lawson and Doohan tussled for seventh at Turn 4, but the Carlin driver held off his Virtuosi compatriot to take sixth.

David Beckmann had kept in touch with the pair and finished eighth, as Dennis Hauger and Armstrong rounded off the top 10 as the latter dropped at the end. Iwasa's drop through the order put him 16th by the end.

Pourchaire’s luck went from bad to worse on lap 14 as he ran wide onto the gravel at Turn 2 while attempting a move on Lawson, dropping him to 17th before he was handed a five-second penalty for causing the collision.

In other contact, Clement Novalak (MP Motorsport) and Boschung had a scuffle at the Variante della Roggia, with Novalak suffering a broken wing while the Campos driver’s race was ended.

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