Jehan Daruvala led the race for a large part but a lock-up after the second safety restart allowed ART Grand Prix driver Frederik Vesti to take the lead and claim his maiden win in the championship.

Jehan Daruvala led for most of the sprint race but a locked-up in the closing stages

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Jehan Daruvala led for most of the sprint race but a locked-up in the closing stages

The only Indian driver on the F2 grid, Jehan Daruvala claimed a podium finish in the sprint race at the Azerbaijan Grand Prix. The Indian driver led the race for a large part but the second safety restart allowed ART Grand Prix driver Frederik Vesti to take the lead and claim his maiden win in the championship. The race started with Jake Hughes in pole position with Daruvala qualifying in eighth place. But the Prema Powerteam racer had a strong start and made the most out of it moving into the lead on the opening lap.

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Jehan Daruvala claimed P2 with a gap of just 0.300s over Frederik Vesti

Vesti was quick on Daruvala’s tail passing Hughes on the second lap but was unable to shake off the Prema driver from the top spot, who built a lead of 1.5s. However, Jehan fell victim to the multiple race restarts allowing the grid to catch up. The first restart occurred after Jehan’s teammate Dennis Hauger locked up and ended up in the wall prompting the safety car on Lap 13.

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Jehan Daruvala locked up on Lap 19 after the second restart allowing Vesti to take the lead

The race resumed on Lap 17 with Daruvala still in the lead. However, the second race restart came up almost immediately after Enzo Fittipaldi and Juri Vips made contact at Turn 2. The race resumed again on Lap 19 but this time Daruvala locked up soon after the restart allowing the second-placed Vesti to take the lead on the inside of Turn 1.

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Daruvala worked hard to regain the top spot with the Prema driver coming close but Vesti held on well and passed the chequered flag with an advantage of 0.300s. Nevertheless, Daruvala fended off Liam Lawson, who made several attempts to move up to second but the Carlin driver had to ultimately settle for third place. The action now moves to Sunday’s feature race at Baku with the race starting with the reverse grid.

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