FIA Formula 2 peeps, its graduates fill up Formula 1 and IndyCar grids, as well as WEC, LM24-related race seats which in turn means it works. What’s behind the success of this competition, the Artist Formerly Known as GP2? It’s a question we won’t try to answer in this mini review of the first two rounds of the 2022 season, not even close!
The class of 2022 is a mix of familiar faces gunning for their one and only F2 Drivers’ crown in their 3rd or 2nd season of racing in this category because you’re out once you win the title and can never ever stage a glorious F2 comeback! But can GP2 champions return, hmm, that’s an interesting question well worth answering one day. So in theory guys like Daruvala, Vips or Lawson (pit stop drama kings in 2022) should be able to have a good shot at it. In reality though, the runaway leader is actually none other than Felipe Drugovich, courtesy of his fantastic consistency in Bahrain and Jeddah. The Brazilian F2 veteran (a cool motorsport term) with a very non-Brazilian surname will be hoping to make an impression on F1 teams this year, having been reunited with blossoming MP MOTORSPORT squad after a bit of a underwhelming 2021 campaign for UNI-Virtuosi. Is he the next Massa that the US-obsessed US F1 owners are maybe looking for? See what I did there? No hard feelings if you don’t.
Honourable mention goes to Richard Verschoor and Théo Pourchaire, RV for his never give up attitude and commercial skills worthy of Zak Brown Marketing and PR award, while the young Frenchman definitely got it in him to become champion.
New kids on the block then. Who are they, why are they here? Are they headed in the right direction?
2021 F3 champ Dennis Hauger and his main rival Jack Doohan are my two most obvious choices given their natural turn of speed, if not supported by lady luck at all in the first two weekends of F2 racing. The Norwegian woodsman only managed to score 8 points so far, plagued by misfortune, wrong SC calls and all types of rookie shenanigans. However I’m positive he’ll come good in the second half of the season or who knows, could Imola in a few days’ time become his turning point in the championship standings? The Aussie hotshot hasn’t had it easy in his first full year of Formula 2, having graduated from F3 as vice-champion to Hauger. The Jr Doohan’s rather modest tally of 6 points can be taken out of conext as tribute to Nico Rosberg’s number in F1; fast in qualifying, the Alpine Academy Driver only needs a few cleaner races to get back on the right path.
Voilà then, F2 in Imola will be epic, banging and massive. Awesome. B.A.D.
Here at Iberianmph offices, we’ll be hoping to rock F2 community directly from the track next time around after two years of digital confinement.