Home Featured Fittipaldi’s double pass key to “very special” first F2 feature race win

Fittipaldi’s double pass key to “very special” first F2 feature race win

by Alejandro Alonso Lopez

Photo: Formula Motorsport Ltd

Enzo Fittipaldi has disclosed the key to his “very special” maiden Formula 2 feature race victory at Jeddah’s Corniche Circuit, where he suffered a brutal accident back in 2021.

The Van Amersfoort Racing emerged from the pit-stops in second place, then overtook Kush Maini to be first of the drivers on the option-prime strategy. The safety car came out after that, benefitting drivers on the alternate strategy. However, Fittipaldi quickly proved his pace, driving past them and opening a 7.895-second gap to Maini at the chequered flag.

“It feels amazing,” Fittipaldi said. “A lot of emotions and just very happy to come out on top today. Van Amersfoort gave me an amazing car, the team did a great job on the pit stop and yeah, we were just flying today.

“I think every lap that we were doing was just very fast and our pace was very fast. We had some good fights on track. We got a bit unlucky with the safety car. I fell back to fourth after and I had some guys on super-soft ahead of me. So I had to, you know, at the same time, kind of manage my tyres but also overtake and I think I managed that well.

“We were very competitive until the last lap of the race, getting the fastest lap I think in the second-to-last lap. So extremely happy and very grateful for this one.”

Fittipaldi knew what he had to do to win when the race restarted with 10 laps to the end.

“I think my mentality was ‘I don’t wanna spend any time behind these guys on the super-soft’ because, you know, as soon as you go through those esses with dirty air, the tyres overheat. So as soon as I had the momentum going into turn one, I decided to brake very late and get both of them [at the] exit of [turn] two, so I have a clean track ahead of me in the esses.

“And that’s what I did and it worked out very well and I was able to build a very good gap from there and manage my tyres until the end.”

The Brazilian also spoke about the significance of his victory at the circuit where he suffered his worst accident.

“That was obviously a hard time in my career,” he commented. “When I had that, you know, it was my second start [third round] in F2 and I had that massive crash in the start.

“You look at it as a negative from the outside. But for me actually, I think I came out a much stronger driver from that and mentally much stronger as well. It was a difficult time. All the pain I went through in December and January and to get back racing in 2022 still with my foot fractured was difficult. And we still had an amazing year that year. So, yeah, it was very special to get the win here in Jeddah.”