Matevos Isaakyan took advantage of a mistake from SMP Racing team-mate Matthieu Vaxiviere to secure his maiden Formula V8 3.5 victory at the Circuito de Jerez, but the big talking point of the day was a collision between championship rivals Tom Dillmann and Louis Deletraz.
Vaxiviere had taken the lead at the start after pole sitter Jack Aitken made a dreadful getaway, with Isaakyan slotting into second, but following a mid-race safety car, Vaxiviere made a mistake at the chicane to allow both Isaakyan and Egor Orudzhev through.
The safety car had been deployed following the collision between Dillmann and Deletraz at turn nine, with the latter attempting to make a move on the former, with the AVF by Adrian Vallés driver ending his afternoon in the gravel trap.
The incident is under investigation, meaning Deletraz’s fourth place finish is not yet set in stone, with the Fortec Motorsports driver in line to take over the lead of the championship should the result stand.
Deletraz managed to briefly pass Vaxiviere for third following his mistake, but the Frenchman found a way back passed into turn two on the following lap, and from there on was unable to make another move for the podium position.
Aurélien Panis finished on Deletraz’s tail for fifth for Arden Motorsport after an early race pass on Rene Binder, with the Austrian finishing just behind the Frenchman in the leading of the Lotus machines.
Yu Kanamaru finished seventh for Teo Martin Motorsport after being heavily impeded by Aitken’s slow start, with the Japanese racer being forced to take to the grass in avoiding action. Kanamaru held off the challenge from team-mate Beitske Visser throughout the race, ending just 0.046 seconds ahead at the chequered flag.
Roy Nissany could only finish ninth in the second Lotus, while Pietro Fittipaldi took the final point on offer for Fortec Motorsports.
Aitken and RP Motorsport team-mate Vitor Baptista finished just outside the points in eleventh and twelfth, the last of the finishers following the retirements for Dillmann, Giuseppe Cipriani, Alfonso Celis Jr and Thomas Randle.
Circuito de Jerez Race 1 Result
|1||24||Matevos Isaakyan||RUS||SMP Racing||43:04.412|
|2||7||Egor Orudzhev||RUS||Arden Motorsport||+0.513|
|3||23||Matthieu Vaxiviere||FRA||SMP Racing||+5.100|
|4||1||Louis Deletraz||SWI||Fortec Motorsports||+7.048|
|5||8||Aurelien Panis||FRA||Arden Motorsport||+8.252|
|7||25||Yu Kanamaru||JAP||Teo Martin Motorsport||+11.470|
|8||6||Beitske Visser||NED||Teo Martin Motorsport||+11.516|
|10||2||Pietro Fittipaldi||BRZ||Fortec Motorsports||+13.827|
|11||21||Jack Aitken||GBR||RP Motorsport||+14.704|
|12||22||Vitor Baptista||BRZ||RP Motorsport||+15.744|
|RET||20||Giuseppe Cipriani||ITA||Durango Racing Team||Retired|
|RET||15||Alfonso Celis Jr||MEX||AVF||Retired|
|RET||17||Thomas Randle||AUS||Comtec Racing||Retired|