Home Formula 2 Coletti extends points lead with Barcelona sprint win

Coletti extends points lead with Barcelona sprint win

by Peter Allen

Photo: GP2 Media Service

Stefano Coletti leads the GP2 Series standings heading to his home round in Monaco after claiming his second win of the season in the sprint race at Barcelona.

Coletti made another of his trademark fast starts to make a move on reverse grid pole-sitter Johnny Cecotto at turn one. Contact was made as Coletti went around the outside, but the Rapax got the deal done at turn three.

Feature race winner Robin Frijns made great progress from eighth on the grid to take up second place as he and Felipe Nasr pulled past Cecotto further around the opening lap.

Coletti stretched his lead to over four seconds and then successfully managed the gap to beat Frijns to the chequered flag, as the Dutchman closed to within 0.6 seconds by the finish. Coletti dedicated his win to his grandfather and a close friend who both passed away since the previous race weekend in Bahrain.

Nasr seemed to be doing his customary tyre-saving tactics as he kept his distance from Frijns, but couldn?t keep up with the Hilmer driver as he chased after Coletti and was made to settle for third.

Cecotto began dropping away from Nasr and had a queue forming up behind him, headed by Jolyon Palmer, Kevin Ceccon and Alexander Rossi. Palmer eventually made it past on lap 21, before everything kicked off behind him.

Front row starter Ceccon fell backwards after he outbraked himself trying to attack Cecotto and ran deep at turn one, but Rossi began struggling with his tyres too and was therefore unable to make a move on Cecotto, who was now more than five seconds a lap slower than the leaders.

Rossi?s Caterham team-mate Sergio Canamasas then came to the fore, having fought his way through from towards the back of the grid. As two controversial drivers, his battle with Cecotto spelled disaster and they clashed when the Arden driver turned in on Canamasas as he was trying to pass into turn 13.

This caused everyone to check up into the chicane, and Rio Haryanto mounted the back of Canamasas? car, dislodging his rear wing.

Cecotto somehow managed to hold onto fifth place, albeit under investigation by the stewards. Rossi, Ceccon and Daniel Abt completed the points, while Fabio Leimer shoved Jon Lancaster wide with a few corners left to take P9.

Coletti has a 17 point lead over Nasr going to Monaco, with Leimer now a further 22 behind after a point-less weekend. Frijns is up to fourth, scoring all his points this past weekend.

Results to follow