Stoffel Vandoorne took his second GP2 victory of the season in Hungary
Palmer finishes second to extend championship lead over Nasr
By William Esler
Last Updated: 27/07/14 12:33pm
A controlled drive from McLaren protégé Stoffel Vandoorne saw him take his second GP2 victory of the season in the Sprint Race in Hungary.
The ART driver got past pole man Nathanael Berthon on the run down to Turn One and from that point on was able to measure his tyre usage at the front of the field. Indeed, the Belgian did such a good job of preserving the life of his Pirellis that he set the fastest lap of the race on the final lap to pick up the two bonus points on offer.
Behind Vandoorne, Jolyon Palmer charged from fifth on the grid to second with a number of lovely overtaking manoeuvres to extend his lead at the top of the Drivers’ Championship. The Briton was the quickest of the lead group for much of the race, but was always going to be on the back foot when it came to tyres having lost his practice set to damage on Friday when he was hit by Johnny Cecotto.
Palmer alluded to that being the reason for his front-left being worn out over the team radio following the race and as he struggled for grip that allowed his title rival Felipe Nasr to close right onto his gearbox on the final lap.
Less than a second separated the pair as they crossed the line, but Nasr had to settle for third and losing further ground in the championship which will have been a disappointment given he started ahead of Palmer.
The Brazilian was unhappy with the move Palmer made on him for second on lap seven when the DAMS driver dived down the inside at Turn One as Nasr tried to brave it out around the outside. The Carlin man ended up running over the exit kerb and voiced his frustrations over the radio, but after an investigation the Stewards decided that no further action was necessary.
"There is no need to race like that," Nasr said as he confronted Palmer in parc ferme. "If I am on your inside, don't come across like that," the Briton calmly replied.
One man that did feel the wrath of the officials for the second time in as many days was Stefano Coletti. He lost his podium finish on Saturday after being handed a 20-second time penalty and was given a drive-through on Sunday after contact with Andre Negrao. “They close the door, I get a drive-through. I close the door, I get a drive-through. You know what, let’s just not race anymore,” the Monegasque said angrily over the team radio before eventually retiring from the race.
Tom Dillmann and Adrian Quaife-Hobbs may also find themselves visiting the Stewards’ office after contact on the final lap when fighting over eighth place. The Caterham driver dived up the inside of the Briton at the chicane, bounced over the kerbs and retired from the race whilst Quaife-Hobbs continued to take the final points paying position.
The next rounds of the GP2 Series take place in Belgium at the legendary Spa-Francorchamps and you can see the action live on Sky Sports F1 on August 22-24.
GP2 Sprint Race – Hungary
1) Stoffel Vandoorne (BEL) – ART Grand Prix – 43:54.536
2) Jolyon Palmer (GBR) – DAMS - +3.328
3) Felipe Nasr (BRA) – Carlin - +4.254
4) Nathanael Berthon (FRA) – Lazarus - +17.211
5) Daniel Abt (GER) – Hilmer Motorsport - +17.211
6) Arthur Pic (FRA) – Campos Racing - +25.326
7) Conor Daly (USA) – Lazarus - +26.815
8) Adrian Quaife-Hobbs (GBR) – Rapax - +31.740
9) Raffaele Marciello (ITA) – Racing Engineering - +34.706
10) Mitch Evans (NZL) – Russian Time - +38.981
16) Jon Lancaster (GBR) – Hilmer Motorsport - +57.709
Stefano Coletti – Racing Engineering – Not classified
Johnny Cecotto – Trident – Not classified
1) Jolyon Palmer – 192
2) Felipe Nasr – 149
3) Stoffel Vandoorne – 109
4) Johnny Cecotto – 100
5) Stefano Coletti - 96