Spa Formula 2: Charles Leclerc and Oliver Rowland disqualified

Formula 2 title rivals Charles Leclerc and Oliver Rowland have been disqualified from the Spa feature race

Spa Formula 2: Charles Leclerc and Oliver Rowland disqualified

Ferrari Formula 1 junior driver Leclerc had taken a dominant victory in the 27-lap race ahead of Artem Markelov and Rowland, but the two standings leaders were excluded from the results following scrutineering "due to excessive wear to the underfloor plank", according to an F2 statement.

"Both cars were subjected to the usual post-race scrutineering checks, which is when the damage was noted on both vehicles," it continued.

"The planks were removed and measured, with the thickness recorded as below the allowable limit."

Markelov and Rowland were already under investigation for an incident at the last corner of the race where the Russian driver went off the track as he battled his DAMS rival, but had enough traction to steal provisional second place at the line.

They were each handed a five-second penalty for the incident - Rowland for "forcing a rival off track" and Markelov for "exceeding track limits and gaining an advantage".

Those penalties cancelled each other out before Rowland was disqualified.

The change to the results means that Russian Time's Markelov is promoted to race winner - his first victory since winning the Austria sprint race - with his team-mate Luca Ghiotto now second.

Leclerc's Prema Racing team-mate Antonio Fuoco moved up to third place and now completes the podium positions.

Gustav Malja and Nyck de Vries are now classified fourth and fifth ahead of Sergio Sette Camara and former F1-driver Roberto Merhi.

Norman Nato will now start Sunday's sprint race from pole position after being boosted up to eighth by the change of results.

Leclerc's disqualification from what had been his sixth victory of his rookie F2 campaign is the second time in two rounds that he has been removed from the final classification of a session.

Last time out in Hungary he lost what would have been a record-breaking seventh consecutive F2 pole due to his car having an illegal brass shim in its differential.

Prema opted not to appeal the decision and explained that the wear to Leclerc's plank had occurred inadvertently.

"In addition to being minimal (less than 0.2 millimetres on one of the seven holes of measurement) the damage was accidental and accentuated by the characteristics of the Belgian circuit," read a statement sent out by the Italian team.

Markelov and Rowland have also had high-profile on- track incidents so far this season.

Rowland got a penalty for forcing the Russian driver off track during the Silverstone sprint event, while in the Hungarian feature race Markelov crashed out while attacking his rival for the lead late on.

With Leclerc and Rowland disqualified from the feature race, the Monegasque driver's standings lead remains the 54 points he had after topping qualifying.

Markelov is now eight points further back from Rowland in third place.

Revised race result

Pos Driver Team Laps Gap
1 Artem Markelov RUSSIAN TIME 25 52m55.172s
2 Luca Ghiotto RUSSIAN TIME 25 1.057s
3 Antonio Fuoco Prema Racing 25 1.446s
4 Gustav Malja Racing Engineering 25 14.912s
5 Nyck de Vries Racing Engineering 25 16.149s
6 Sergio Sette Camara MP Motorsport 25 24.356s
7 Roberto Merhi Rapax 25 28.479s
8 Norman Nato Pertamina Arden 25 30.611s
9 Santino Ferrucci Trident 25 37.735s
10 Robert Visoiu Campos Racing 25 39.133s
11 Nabil Jeffri Trident 25 42.608s
12 Alexander Albon ART Grand Prix 25 54.552s
13 Ralph Boschung Campos Racing 25 55.217s
14 Louis Deletraz Rapax 25 56.070s
15 Sean Gelael Pertamina Arden 25 1m09.082s
16 Nobuharu Matsushita ART Grand Prix 24 1 Lap
- Charles Leclerc Prema Racing 25 Disqualified
- Oliver Rowland DAMS 25 Disqualified
- Jordan King MP Motorsport 1 Retirement
- Nicholas Latifi DAMS 0 Not started

Race two starting grid

Pos Driver Team
1 Norman Nato Pertamina Arden
2 Roberto Merhi Rapax
3 Sergio Sette Camara MP Motorsport
4 Nyck de Vries Racing Engineering
5 Gustav Malja Racing Engineering
6 Antonio Fuoco Prema Racing
7 Luca Ghiotto RUSSIAN TIME
8 Artem Markelov RUSSIAN TIME
9 Santino Ferrucci Trident
10 Robert Visoiu Campos Racing
11 Nabil Jeffri Trident
12 Alexander Albon ART Grand Prix
13 Ralph Boschung Campos Racing
14 Louis Deletraz Rapax
15 Sean Gelael Pertamina Arden
16 Nobuharu Matsushita ART Grand Prix
17 Jordan King MP Motorsport
18 Nicholas Latifi DAMS
19 Charles Leclerc Prema Racing
20 Oliver Rowland DAMS

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Spa Formula 2: Ferrari F1 junior Leclerc dominates feature race
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