Monza F2: Matsushita wins, de Vries last-to-third

Honda Formula 1 junior Nobuharu Matsushita took his second Formula 2 win of the year at Monza ahead of a charging Luca Ghiotto, as Nyck de Vries recovered from last to third.

Monza F2: Matsushita wins, de Vries last-to-third

Matsushita took the lead at the Variante della Roggia on lap four of 30 and a rapid pitstop from his Carlin squad meant he emerged comfortably ahead of polesitter Callum Ilott.

Ilott, the Sauber Junior Team's sole driver this weekend, closed the gap on the medium tyres and worked his way into DRS range, but with less than 10 laps to go, Matsushita cranked up the pace and edged out of reach.

Read Also:

His biggest threat to victory at that point was Ghiotto (UNI-Virtuosi), who started on the medium tyres and was into the top five within two laps from 13th on the grid. 

Ghiotto delivered a near-perfect stint, but a pitstop issue robbed him of any chance to fight for the win on his softer rubber in the closing stages. 

Matsushita’s car shed a turning vane with eight laps to go, but it didn’t affect his pace as he stormed to a second race win of the year, making up for an embarrassing spin in mixed conditions in qualifying.

Read Also:

Points leader de Vries was forced to start at the back of the grid due to not having enough fuel after qualifying, robbing him of fourth on the grid. 

The ART Grand Prix driver was into the top six on lap 10 of 30, and was rapid on the medium tyre during the closing stages, reeling in the fading Ilott.

After erasing a gap of over six seconds to Ilott, he took second with four laps to go at Turn 1. 

Subsequently, a charging Ghiotto passed Ilott – whose tyres were finished – with three laps to go, and he dived past de Vries at the entry to the Ascari chicane with two laps remaining to grab second, falling 5.7s shy of victory.

De Vries took third and extended his championship lead, ahead of Sergio Sette Camara of DAMS, but the latter had a five-second penalty for leaving the track and gaining an advantage in an earlier battle with de Vries, which meant he fell to fifth behind Ilott.

Jordan King (MP Motorsport) and Giuliano Alesi (Trident) joined Ghiotto in running the alternate strategy and finished sixth and seventh, while Renault junior Jack Aitken will start on pole for Sunday’s reversed-grid race for Campos Racing. 

Prema Racing’s Sean Gelael and MP’s Mahaveer Raghunathan rounded out the top 10.

Nicholas Latifi – de Vries's closest title contender – was involved in contact with Renault junior Guan Yu Zhou, dropping both well down the order. Zhou retired and Latifi took 13th.

Zhou was later handed a three-place grid penalty for Sunday's feature race, where he will start at the back of the grid.

Race results:

shares
comments
F2 points leader de Vries excluded from Monza qualifying

Previous article

F2 points leader de Vries excluded from Monza qualifying

Next article

Pirelli unveils prototype 18-inch F1 tyres

Pirelli unveils prototype 18-inch F1 tyres
Load comments

About this article

Series FIA F2
Event Monza
Sub-event Race 2
Drivers Nyck de Vries , Luca Ghiotto , Nobuharu Matsushita
Teams Carlin
Author Jack Benyon
The F1 hopeful living two lives to keep his dream alive Prime

The F1 hopeful living two lives to keep his dream alive

Having lost his backing from Red Bull, Richard Verschoor has had to graft to continue his ascent up the single-seater ladder. An impressive Formula 2 debut in Bahrain, despite the lateness of his deal, shows his unorthodox approach is paying dividends.

FIA F2
Apr 22, 2021
Was Formula 2’s radical format switch a success? Prime

Was Formula 2’s radical format switch a success?

Going into the 2021 Formula 2 season the biggest talking point wasn’t about any drivers or teams, but the new race weekend format. Created partly out of financial necessity but also to spice up the action, the Bahrain opener provided a snapshot of the positives and negatives to come.

FIA F2
Apr 4, 2021
Why 2021 is make-or-break for the driver F1 needs Prime

Why 2021 is make-or-break for the driver F1 needs

He was tipped for glory in FIA Formula 2 last year, but was hampered by reliability woes at inopportune moments. Guanyu Zhou knows he won't get too many more chances if he is to become China's first F1 driver, with fierce competition within the ranks of Alpine's junior stable

FIA F2
Mar 25, 2021
Ranked! Carlin's greatest F1 graduates Prime

Ranked! Carlin's greatest F1 graduates

Carlin has helped guide enough drivers to Formula 1 to fill out an entire grid, plus a handful of reserves, to create a remarkable alumni list. With Yuki Tsunoda set to join that group, Motorsport.com has ranked its graduates to grace the grand prix scene...

Formula 1
Feb 22, 2021
How Mick Schumacher earned his Haas F1 chance Prime

How Mick Schumacher earned his Haas F1 chance

Michael Schumacher may have won seven Formula 1 titles, but he didn't even compete for a crown at the second tier. Son Mick put that right in 2020, and proved to Ferrari that he was deserving of a shot at motorsport's elite category in 2021…

Formula 1
Jan 9, 2021
How Aitken’s fortunes turned around for his shock F1 chance Prime

How Aitken’s fortunes turned around for his shock F1 chance

As a consequence of George Russell's step up to Mercedes to cover for the COVID-positive Lewis Hamilton, Jack Aitken will make his Formula 1 debut for Williams at the Sakhir Grand Prix. Long on F1's peripheries, Aitken finally has a chance to shine.

Formula 1
Dec 3, 2020
How F1's foundation has responded to the coronavirus threat Prime

How F1's foundation has responded to the coronavirus threat

While Formula 1 felt the public brunt of the coronavirus pandemic, the virus also put the Formula 2 and Formula 3 categories on hiatus. But their roles in feeding F1 with drivers meant their survival was crucial to their parent series' long-term future

FIA F2
Jun 11, 2020
The year Leclerc fully revealed his star status Prime

The year Leclerc fully revealed his star status

In the latest feature in our series looking back on the 2010s, we revisit Charles Leclerc's sensational Formula 2 season - where he strode among on-track highs and lows, as well as tragedy away from motorsport, to earn a place on the Formula 1 grid

Formula 1
Dec 26, 2019