Prema’s Frederik Vesti continued his Formula 2 title charge with second place in the feature race at the Hungaroring.
The Mercedes-AMG Formula 1 junior might not have been able to challenge Virtuosi Racing’s Jack Doohan for victory, but the 18 points scored could prove crucial to beat ART Grand Prix’s Theo Pourchaire to the F2 crown.
Despite finishing outside the points in Saturday’s sprint race, Vesti outscored Pourchaire across the weekend by five points. To do so, he was willing to take more risks than usual, and it paid off.
“I knew it was worth taking the risk on the outside because it’s difficult to overtake here and it’s also very difficult to maintain the tyres if you are following,” Vesti said of his lap one pass on ART GP’s Victor Martins for second place.
For the Dane, “it was very important” to bounce back after a troubled previous round at Silverstone which “hurt a lot and it was a bit of a punch” as Pourchaire cut his championship lead to six points.
“The consistency is a bit like a snowball. It goes in a way really, really good, it’s the momentum you build, and I think since Monaco I have a very good rhythm. And then obviously a weekend like Silverstone with a bad qualifying, engine failure and getting hit in the safety car restart, scoring only 10 points that weekend, it just stops that snowball effect.
“And you have to go away from the race track, try to think what you can do, and just show up again confident and do exactly what we did this weekend. Being fast in free practice, quali, and competitive in both races. That’s the way you have to bounce back, and that gives me a lot of confidence for the next few rounds, especially for already next week at Spa-Francorchamps. So it feels good, and it means that now we have a small lead again, which is nice.”
Vesti “can’t believe there are only four rounds left”, and emphasised the importance of continuing to perform in all sessions. Although he wants to avoid “incredible risk” with a title on the line, he also wants to “to continue to fight” for results.
“We need to continue pushing though, it’s not a given that we are fast every weekend. So it means that we need to do our job very well, both in the simulator with the set-up and how I approach the mental game. Obviously there is pressure, and fighting for a championship like this means a lot to all of us. And it’s something you have to deal with as a driver.
“But I’m in a very good place, I’m more confident than I’ve ever been, and a result like this just reconfirms that, and I’m ready to continue fighting.”