BVM Racing’s Francesco Simonazzi held off a late attack from Tim Tramnitz to claim his second Euroformula win in race two of the season at Algarve.
Cian Shields was set to start from reversed-grid pole, but he was unable to get away from his grid slot on the formation lap and was then wheeled off the grid.
That meant Motopark team-mate Bryce Aron started at the front, but he had a slow launch and so Simonazzi raced into the lead before turn one and Enzo Trulli – driving for Motopark’s Japanese offshoot CryptoTower Racing Team – got himself into second from what had been sixth on the grid.
Simonazzi ended lap one 1.252 seconds ahead, a gap he extended to 1.629s next time by but was then reduced back to 1.2s by Trulli. The pair were split by 0.9s after five laps, and Trulli had team-mate Tramnitz behind.
Tramnitz started one position ahead of Trulli and ended lap one in fourth, but benefited from a slidey moment for Aron exiting turn 10 on lap two to pass him on the run to turn one the next lap.
There were a few small mistakes from Simonazzi and Trulli while under pressure, with Trulli running off track exiting turn 14 on lap 10 of 18 after bringing Simonazzi’s lead down to its smallest margin yet.
The error did not cost Trulli any time, but Tramnitz was able to run closer to him as a result and he then had the slipstream to pass under braking for turn one on lap 13.
Tramnitz got onto Simonazzi’s tail at the start of the penultimate lap, prompting Simonazzi to defend the inside down the pit straight. He went deep at turn one, briefly going off at the exit, but stayed ahead.
At the turn five hairpin Tramnitz went for the outside, then did the switchback and ran side-by-side with Simonazzi through until turn 10.
Simonazzi did the same on the last lap, and went side-by-side with Tramnitz again at turn one. Tramnitz went off exiting the corner, and Trulli tried going around his outside at turn three. They touched at turn four, sending Tramnitz off and costing him a spot. The incident was put under investigation, while Simonazzi gladfully took the victory.
After running slowly at the back through lap one, Leon set fastest lap multiple times and closed down a 15s gap to Vladimir Netusil to take seventh place from him in the race’s first third. He then tracked down Juju Noda and passed her for sixth into turn one on lap 11, and after that had four seconds to make up on Motopark’s Jakob Bergmeister. Leon got behind him at the end of lap 14 and dived down his inside at turn one on the next lap for fifth place.
Shields did start the race, but pitted after two laps and dropped two laps down. NV Racing’s Paolo Brajnik meanwhile failed to start, continuing a debut weekend where his participation has been on-and-off.
Race result (18 laps)
|1||Francesco Simonazzi||BVM Racing||29m33.516s|
|2||Enzo Trulli||CryptoTower Racing||+1.358s|
|3||Tim Tramnitz||CryptoTower Racing||+2.429s|
|7||Juju Noda||Noda Racing||+21.582s|
|8||Vladimir Netusil||Effective Racing||+1m09.612s|
|9||Cian Shields||Motopark||+2 laps|
|Fastest lap: Leon, 1m37.463s