Anthoine Hubert Captures First F2 Win In Photo Finish With Louis Delétraz

by Aaron Gillard
Hubert - Deletraz - F2 Monaco Sprint

BWT Arden‘s Anthoine Hubert captured his first FIA Formula 2 win in the Monaco Sprint race, beating Carlin‘s Louis Delétraz in a photo finish, separated by only 0.059 seconds.

The 2018 GP3 series champion led from start to finish to claim victory around the streets of Monaco, surviving from a late charge from Delétraz in the final few laps. UNI-Virtuosi Racing‘s Guanyu Zhou was behind the two drivers by 0.922 seconds, claimed third ahead of MP Motorsport‘s Artem Markelov. The top four pulled away from the rest of the field and contested with each other throughout the sprint race.

Reverse grid pole sitter Hubert got off the line well and retained the lead on the opening lap. Zhou jumped ahead of Markelov to take third place in the race towards Sainte Devote. Mahaveer Raghunathan cut the opening turn and passed several cars as a result and was later handed a ten second penalty.

On Lap 4, Tatiana Calderón‘s race came to an end when Luca Ghiotto collided with the Colombian driver at Mirabeau, which sent the Arden into the barriers. The Safety car came out as the marshals cleared away the stranded car.

After a lap, the safety car came back in and Hubert resumed the lead of the race ahead of Delétraz, Zhou and Markelov. Zhou was under pressure from the Russian driver at the restart, but maintained his position ahead of the F2 veteran.

A second safety car was brought out after Ghiotto made a late move on Raghunathan at the Hairpin, but the Virtuosi driver couldn’t execute the move and collided with the MP driver and sending both drivers into the barrier on Lap 7.

On Lap 9, the safety car came in once again and Hubert led the field away with the top four following each other closely. Ralph Boschung in the Trident was slow and retired from the race a lap after the restart.

The top four pulled away from the rest of the field and followed each other closely by 2.5 seconds, but neither of them could find a way past each other. Nyck de Vries made his way pass Sérgio Sette Câmara up to seventh place on Lap 18.

Trident’s Giuliano Alesi got hit by Sean Gelael in the Prema at the Hairpin and at the Nouvelle chicane, with the second contact sending Alesi off the track and facing the wrong direction. A yellow flag was brought out at the chicane as the marshals cleared away the Trident. The Frenchman retired as a result, making it a double DNF for the Italian team. Gelael was given a drive-through penalty for the collision with Alesi.

Markelov followed closely with Zhou, but lost ground when he had to cut the chicane at the exit of the Swimming Pool section. The Russian remained in fourth place and soon caught up with the Chinese driver with eight laps to go.

Sette Câmara managed to find his way back past de Vries and soon were battling for sixth place in the final stages of the race.

With three laps to go, Delétraz managed to reduce the gap to race leader Hubert down to three tenths of a second as the Carlin driver tried to find his way pass the Frenchman. Hubert began to struggle on his tyres, but held his ground which allowed Zhou to get close to Delétraz in the final laps.

On the last lap of the race, the top three were within two seconds of each other. Hubert managed to hold onto the win with a photo finish to the line against Delétraz. The Arden driver managed to reach the line first to claim his first win in the series ahead of the Swiss driver, with Zhou behind in third.

CamposDorian Boccolacci captured fifth place ahead of DAMS‘ Sette Câmara and Feature race winner de Vries, who takes the lead of the championship, snatching it away from Nicholas Latifi. de Vries’ ART Grand Prix team-mate Nikita Mazepin rounds off the points paying positions with eighth place.

PositionCar NumberTeamDriverNATTime
119BWT ArdenAnthoine HubertFRA44:23.388
21Carlin MotorsportLouis DeletrazCHE0.059
37UNI-Virtuosi RacingGuanyu ZhouCHI0.922
416MP MotorsportArtem MarkelovRUS2.459
514Campos RacingDorian BoccolacciFRA13.689
65DAMSSergio Sette CamaraBRZ16.322
74ART Grand PrixNyck de VriesNED16.952
83ART Grand PrixNikita MazepinRUS17.337
92Carlin MotorsportNobuharu MatsushitaJPN18.770
106DAMSNicholas LatifiCAN19.335
119PREMA RacingMick SchumacherGER21.559
1212Sauber Junior Team by CharouzJuan Manuel CorreaUSA22.639
1315Campos RacingJack AitkenGBR23.284
1411Sauber Junior Team by CharouzCallum IlottGBR24.813
1510PREMA RacingSean GelaelINO+1 Lap
DNF20TridentGiuliano AlesiFRADNF
DNF21TridentRalph BoschungCHEDNF
DNF17MP MotorsportMahaveer RaghunathanNEDDNF
DNF8UNI-Virtuosi RacingLuca GhiottoITADNF
DNF18BWT ArdenTatiana CalderonCOLDNF

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