This weekend, the Formula 2 competitors are racing at the Russian track based around the former Olympic village. For Armstrong and Shwartzman it’s a return to the scene of past glories.
Following on from the round in Monza, the Formula 2 championship now reaches Sochi for round six of eight on the 2021 calendar. The Russian track holds no secrets for Robert Shwartzman and Marcus Armstrong, who both enjoyed an unforgettable weekend here in 2019. Two years ago, on his home track, Robert clinched the Formula 3 championship title after finishing second in Race 1, right behind Marcus who secured his third win of the season.
A strong weekend in prospect. Both Ferrari Academy Drivers are therefore hoping to do well at a track they like. Shwartzman is currently third in the championships, having come away from Monza with a good points haul, including a podium finish in Race 2. “The most encouraging sign from Robert’s weekend in Monza was his race pace,” commented the head of the FDA, Marco Matassa. “It meant he was able to make up ground after qualifying had not gone as well as expected. His pace in the three races in Italy means Robert can be optimistic about his weekend, when he will also have the support of his home crowd.”
Good race pace. Monza did not go according to plan for Armstrong, but he too showed a good race pace, which saw him make up several places after a poor qualifying. “The weekend began with a technical problem that meant I couldn’t take part in free practice,” said the New Zealander. “From then on I was on the back foot all weekend. We made it into the points in Race 3 and I hope that everything goes smoothly in Sochi and that we can work calmly so that I can give it my best shot.”
Programme. There is a chance of rain in Sochi this weekend, which could be a key factor as the drivers only have one 45-minute free practice session to get to grips with the track. That session is on Friday 10.05 local, (9.05 CET), with qualifying at 16.25 (15.25 CET). The first Sprint Race is on Saturday at 10.30 (9.30 CET) with the second one at 16.45 (15.45 CET). The final Feature Race takes place on Sunday at 11.20 (10.20 CET).