Today’s Sprint Race in Sochi lasted just seven laps, following a nasty looking crash between Jack Aitken and Luca Ghiotto at Turn 3. Both drivers were unhurt, but their cars damaged the barriers, bringing out the red flag: 20 minutes later the race was declared over because the barriers had to be repaired. The result was taken, as stated in the regulations, at the end of the fifth lap, with only half points awarded. Mick Schumacher was third, behind Guan Yu Zhou and Nikita Mazepin.
Incredible start. Mick had a brilliant start from eighth on the grid, a spot of late braking into turn 2, seeing him move up to fourth. He had a strong pace and that saw him pass Jack Aitken on lap 4. At this point, Schumacher set off in pursuit of Mazepin, who was second, but the red flag meant he had to settle for third.
Satisfied. “The most important thing is that the drivers involved in the crash are alright”, commented Schumacher. “Obviously, I would have liked to have finished the race and see what I could do, but third isn’t bad given that I started from the fourth row. I got a great start and, for the few laps we raced, I had a good pace. Now we have a long break in the calendar and it will be important to maintain concentration for the final round in Bahrain.”
Extended lead. Schumacher consolidated his championship lead, moving up to 191 points, 23 more than Callum Ilott who finished seventh today. Robert Shwartzman was also in the points in tenth place, while Marcus Armstrong lost four places when he made a mistake under braking at turn 2 on lap 5. The New Zealander thus had to settle for 14th place, two positions ahead of Giuliano Alesi.
A break. There is now a long wait until the final two rounds of the Formula 2 championship, which resumes on 29 November in Bahrain, with races on two consecutive weekends.