Ferrari

F.Regional: Petecof and Leclerc title fight

Imola 22 November 2020

At the penultimate round of the European Formula Regional Championship, Ferrari Driver Academy students, Gianluca Petecof and Arthur Leclerc both got to the podium. The latter picked up 33 points with a third place in Race-1 and a second in Race-3, which made up for a retirement in the second race because of a technical problem. Leclerc is now just two points off Petecof, who finished third, fourth and eighth. He keeps the series lead on 337 points.

Podium. Leclerc and Petecof started Race 1 from fourth and eighth respectively and helped by the fact that Prema Powerteam team-mate Oliver Rasmussen was not on the grid, Leclerc moved up to second, sandwiched between the leader Ian Rodriguez and Denis Hauger with Petecof seventh. With six laps to go, Leclerc made a mistake at the exit to Rivazza and lost a place to finish third. Petecof them made a small but crucial error braking for Tamburello, dropping a place and took the chequered flag in eighth place.

Cold shower. Leclerc seemed handily placed for Race-2, starting from pole, as did Petecof, lining up on the second row. As the lights went out, the pole man got away well to lead by a handy margin, but a few corners later came a cold shower in the form of a technical problem which saw the Monegasque cruise round to the pits to retire. Petecof moved up to third and had to fend off Dennis Hauger for all 19 laps, the two going head to head all the way to the chequered flag, with a well deserved podium finish for Petecof.

Fight back. The final race of the weekend saw Leclerc start from second and Petecof from sixth. The Brazilian got away well to go fifth, while Leclerc held station behind the leader Patrik Pasma. Again, overtaking proved difficult for everyone and the order hardly changed as a result. Petecof managed to finish fourth, fending off attacks, which was important in view of the championship standings while Leclerc was second behind Pasma.

The decider at Vallelunga. Formula Regional moves from Imola to Vallelunga for the final round over the weekend of 6 December. It should be a time of high drama as Petecof and Leclerc fight it out for the title over three races.