Artem Markelov: “I want to thank the whole team for a strong weekend”

by Paul Hensby

Artem Markelov moved into second place in the FIA Formula 2 Championship standings after two top-four finishes at Silverstone, with his weekend ending with a well-earned podium in the Sprint race.

The Russian Time driver started fifth on the grid on Saturday but dropped a position early on to ART Grand Prix’s Nobuharu Matsushita, before re-passing the Japanese racer, and later on made a good move on MP Motorsport’s Jordan King to take fourth, where he remained until the chequered flag.

“I didn’t make the greatest start and lost out to Matsushita, but managed to get past him quite quickly,” said Markelov. “I then closed on the group ahead but Silverstone is a very quick track and it’s quite tough staying close through the high-speed section to make use of DRS on Hangar Straight.

“I managed to pass King into Stowe at the second attempt and I’m pleased to have cemented my third place in the championship.”

Markelov’s Sprint race started with a trip onto the grass halfway down the Wellington Straight courtesy of a robust defensive move by Oliver Rowland, with the DAMS driver earning a penalty as a result.

Later in the race, the Russian driver got revenge on the Briton by making a pass for the final podium position on the final lap, despite Rowland’s erratic safety car restart procedure.

“It feels good to move into second place in the Driver’s championship!” admitted Markelov. “I knew that Rowland had a penalty and so I wasn’t risking too much trying to pass.

“Behind the Safety Car though, he slowed down to try to make things difficult for me but then made a mistake at Turn 5 and I was able to get finally pass.

“I want to thank the whole team for a strong weekend.”

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