ABU DHABI, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES - NOVEMBER 19: Richard Verschoor of Netherlands and Trident (20) leads the field into turn one at the start during the Round 14:Yas Island sprint race of the Formula 2 Championship at Yas Marina Circuit on November 19, 2022 in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates. (Photo by Joe Portlock - Formula 1/Formula Motorsport Limited via Getty Images)
F2 Sprint Race Results: Abu Dhabi
Find out what happened in the final Sprint Race of the Formula 2 season
Liam Lawson took victory in the final Sprint race of the 2022 Formula 2 season in Abu Dhabi.
Lawson took his fourth victory of the season ahead of Richard Verschoor and Felipe Drugovich following a dramatic crash and plenty of tight battles throughout the field.
Reverse grid polesitter Verschoor had a clean start and kept it ahead of Lawson and Amaury Cordeel. Those two followed him through the first couple of corners, while further back Logan Sargeant dropped from fifth to ninth.
There were only a few corners of clean racing before Jehan Daruvala and Enzo Fittipaldi made contact and both hit the wall hard. Fortunately, both drivers were ok, and the race was red-flagged to clean up the damage.
After a lengthy break, the race resumed with a rolling start. It was a calm restart, with everyone maintaining their positions. But all throughout the field, drivers stayed close to one another. Jack Doohan was sitting behind Sargeant in seventh place, and looked to make a move but couldn’t quite pull it off. Further down the field, Iwasa and Vesti battled over 11th, with Vesti coming out on top.
DRS was enabled on Lap 6, and Vershoor’s gap to Lawson was less than a second. Still, it wasn’t powerful enough for the Kiwi, or anyone else in the field, to make up places right away.
It took four more laps for Lawson to make the move on Verschoor, finally doing so at Turn 6 on Lap 10. Verschoor fought back for a couple of corners but wasn’t able to regain the lead, and settled into second place.
Meanwhile, Sargeant and Doohan were still battling for sixth place. With Doohan just nine points behind Sargeant in the standings, it was a tense fight for both drivers. Several times throughout the final 15 laps Doohan was within DRS of Sargeant for a lap or so at a time, but could never quite get close enough to make a real attempt at a pass. He got closest on Lap 12 when Sargeant locked up his left front tyre and flat spotted it, but it wasn’t long before Sargeant pulled that gap again.
Not far ahead of them, Dennis Hauger and Felipe Drugovich were also in the midst of a close battle for fourth place. Again, it took him several laps of DRS to be able to make the move, but the Formula 2 champion finally gained a place after three attempts on Lap 17.
Now, Sargeant closed in on Hauger, with Doohan still close behind him. But those three maintained their positions while Drugovich had the pace to battle with Cordeel for the last spot on the podium.
Cordeel had a lock-up on Lap 21 that allowed Drugovich to make his way by him and also allowed Hauger to close up. On the final laps, those two drivers scrapped for fourth place, Hauger first taking it off the track and was forced to give it back.
But right as Lawson crossed the line to take his fourth Sprint Race victory of the year, Hauger made the move stick on Cordeel and secured fourth place.
Verschoor and Drugovich joined Lawson on the podium, followed by Hauger and Cordeel. Behind them was Sargeant, who managed to stay just ahead of Doohan in seventh. Roy Nissany, who will start second tomorrow, took the final points-paying position in eighth.
This win puts Lawson fourth in the standings, just four points behind Sargeant, who stays in third for now. He’ll have to stay above eighth in the standings to secure a Super Licence and get a Formula 1 seat.
Feature Image Credit: Getty Images
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