Julien Jousse utterly dominated Sunday's second Formula 2 race at Donington Park, streaking away from pole position and claiming his maiden win by more than 15 seconds.
The 23-year-old Frenchman had a clear lead as early as the first lap, but a safety car period four laps in erased his early work and made him do it all again. He surged away at the restart and lapped up to a second quicker than his pursuers throughout the 25-lap race. His fastest lap was over seven tenths of a second faster than anyone else managed.
Behind Jousse, Kazim Vasiliauskas jumped from fourth to second at the start, passing both Mirko Bortolotti and Sebastian Hohenthal away from the line. The Lithuanian settled into second place quickly and had a lonely but comfortable run to his best result of the season - and his first podium since the season opener at Valencia.
Mirko Bortolotti held onto third place despite intense pressure from Sebastian Hohenthal and Andy Soucek behind. Hohenthal was threatening Bortolotti in the first half of the race, but the Swede eventually lost momentum and was pounced on by the championship leader in the Craner Curves. Soucek braved it out around the outside and moved ahead into the Old Hairpin.
He then caught Bortolotti and made several attempts to pass the Italian, but he ultimately outbraked himself at the Esses and had to bounce straight on through the gravel and hand the place back. He never came as close again and had to settle for fourth. Tobias Hegewald completed the top six.
It was another race to forget for Soucek's closest title rival, Robert Wickens. From eighth on the grid, he slipped down the order with an off at the Old Hairpin on the first lap and eventually retired after contact with Alex Brundle at the safety car restart on lap six.
The incident that caused the early caution was a first-lap collision in the midfield at the Esses, where Jason Moore and Tom Gladdis limped back to the pits with wounded cars while Armaan Ebrahim, Nicola de Marco and Jens Hoing were left stranded in the gravel.
Pos Driver Time/Gap 1. Julien Jousse 38m28.770s 2. Kazim Vasiliauskas +15.116 3. Mirko Bortolotti +17.858 4. Andy Soucek +18.318 5. Sebastian Hohenthal +19.315 6. Tobias Hegewald +19.948 7. Mikhail Aleshin +20.383 8. Milos Pavlovic +21.440 9. Carlos Iaconelli +23.886 10. Philipp Eng +24.301 11. German Sanchez +32.270 12. Jolyon Palmer +33.004 13. Henri Karjalainen +33.729 14. Jack Clarke +37.285 15. Pietro Gandolfi +1m04.475s Retirements Natacha Gachnang 19 laps Edoardo Piscopo 12 laps Alex Brundle 5 laps Robert Wickens 5 laps Jason Moore 1 lap Tom Gladdis 1 lap Armaan Ebrahim 0 laps Nicola de Marco 0 laps Jens Hoing 0 laps