Jack Doohan endured a tough battle with Ollie Bearman in Formula 2’s sprint race at Silverstone and feels the Ferrari junior driver overstepped the limits while defending his position.
The Virtuosi Racing driver eventually drove past Prema’s Bearman to claim third place, but he was still unhappy with how the fight had unfolded, after voicing his frustration in several radio messages broadcast during the race.
The Alpine junior also reckoned that he would have had the chance to fight ART Grand Prix’s Theo Pourchaire for second place had he overtaken Bearman earlier on.
“Unfortunately, it didn’t go as smoothly as I would have hoped,” he declared after the race. “Not really the racing standard that I was hoping for, but [it’s] what I got. And I really had to be very smart because if I had wanted to commit to any of those moves, I probably wouldn’t be sitting here right now. I’d probably be in the gravel trap.
“He was trying to close the door on me but ended up making a mistake. So I was able to get past with no damage, which was nice. Then I could see my pace immediately dropped by 2.5 seconds per lap. You know, what I had the whole time, just unfortunately, it wasn’t as easy to get past as I would have liked.”
He then added: “It would have been great to get past six laps earlier and being able to hopefully take the fight to Theo. Potentially it was too late for Fred [Vesti], but I think that would have been nice.”
Doohan refused to comment on whether Bearman deserved a penalty for his fierce defence as “that’s not up to me and what I think”. During the race, stewards reviewed the moment where Doohan had to run off-track at the exit of Stowe on lap 13 of 19 and decided that no further investigation was needed.
“How he drives his car is up to him obviously. I will let the stewards dictate that really. But occasionally by the time I’d get to the exit, I wouldn’t be exactly alongside because mid corner, when I’d get alongside, he would have a snap and go to crash into me. So I’d have to get out and then he would think it’s acceptable to push me then off track.
“That is not really the standard that I choose to drive by. But he’s a racing driver and he’s fighting for a podium position. Not saying I wouldn’t expect anything less, but maybe a little bit cleaner next time would be great.”
As he overtook at Vale with two laps to go, when the Briton locked up his tyres and went wide, Doohan waved towards Bearman in what he described as“a little au revoir my friend and see you later”.
Despite the heated-up battle, Doohan said he doesn’t “really have any problems” with Bearman as “I’m pretty sure it’s nothing against me”.