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Monaco Formula 2 Iwasa
MONTE-CARLO, MONACO - MAY 27: Isack Hadjar of France and Hitech Pulse-Eight (10) leads Ayumu Iwasa of Japan and DAMS (11) and the rest of the field into turn one at the start during the Round 6:Monte Carlo Sprint race of the Formula 2 Championship at Circuit de Monaco on May 27, 2023 in Monte-Carlo, Monaco. (Photo by Joe Portlock - Formula 1/Formula Motorsport Limited via Getty Images)

F2 Sprint Race Report: Monaco

Find out what happened in the Formula 2 Sprint Race at the Circuit de Monaco

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Ayumu Iwasa won the Formula 2 Sprint Race at Monaco following heartbreak for Isack Hadjar.

Iwasa Formula 2 Monaco
Ayumu Iwasa on track during Formula 2 Sprint Race (Image Credit: Joe Portlock – Getty Images)
How it happened

The Red Bull juniors of Isack Hadjar and Ayumu Iwasa started on the front row, having qualified ninth and tenth yesterday.

All 22 drivers got away cleanly – for the first few corners. Hadjar lead Iwasa, Jehan Daruvala, and Jak Crawford. Further down the field drivers like Theo Pourchaire attempted to make up a couple of positions but ultimately backed out of the move.

Then at the Nouvelle Chicane, further down the field, Trident’s Clement Novalak spun the Campos Racing car of Kush Maini. both drivers escaped without major damage but others behind them weren’t so fortunate. The cars of Roy Nissany and Ralph Boschung were left stranded on the track, leading to a Virtual Safety Car and then a full Safety Car on Lap 2.

Disaster struck for Hadjar on the restart, suffering a mechanical issue and allowing Iwasa to swoop in and take the lead. The French driver fell to the back of the back before retiring from the race.

The new race leader took it in his stride and quickly pulled away from the rest of the grid. By Lap 10, Iwasa was over two seconds ahead of Daruvala in second.

Settling down

As the 19 drivers left in the race started to fall into a rhythm, Richard Verschoor remained within DRS range of Crawford and a potential podium.

By Lap 14 Daruvala closed the gap that Iwasa had pulled earlier and was within a one second himself. He inched closer and closer, getting within 7-tenths before falling back again after the halfway point in the race.

On Lap 17 seventh-placed Victor Martins set the fastest lap of the race so far. By Lap 22 the highest-placed driver in DRS range of the driver ahead of them was Amaury Cordeel in tenth.

Unfortunately for Cordeel, he sustained contact with Van Amersfoort Racing’s Juan Manuel Correa on Lap 23, sending the Invicta Virtuosi driver into the wall and bringing out another Safety Car.

The Safety Car was brought in after Lap 24, allowing for six more laps of racing. Iwasa had a clean restart and pulled away from Daruvala once again, as PREMA Racing’s Oliver Bearman pulled into the pits and retired with an issue.

It took less than a lap for Iwasa to pull over three seconds away from Daruvala, as Crawford closed in from third place.

On Lap 28 Jack Doohan in sixth place set the new fastest lap of the race: a 1:22.818. Drivers stayed close to each other in the finals laps but again were unable to make up any positions.

In the end, Iwasa won the race by over six seconds over Daruvala, and Crawford fended off Verschoor to take third place. Zane Maloney came fifth behind him, ahead of Doohan and the ART Grand Prix pair of Pourchaire and Martins.

Just outside the points were tomorrow’s polesitter Frederik Vesti, and Rodin Carlin’s Enzo Fittipaldi.

Full results can be found here.

Feature Image Credit: Joe Portlock – Getty Images

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