Arden‘s Anthoine Hubert says that he was ‘really motivated’ to get the win on home soil by the French supporters the day before he eventually won the FIA Formula 2 Sprint race.
Hubert converted reverse grid pole to the win by leading all laps towards his second win in three races. The 2018 GP3 Series champion rounded off an all rookie podium with Juan Manuel Correa and fellow Renault Academy driver Guanyu Zhou joining him on the rostrum.
Hubert claimed victory at the previous round at Monaco in the Sprint race, narrowly beating Carlin‘s Louis Delétraz to the finish line and prior to the weekend, said that he aims to make it onto the podium in front of his home supporters.
But the Frenchman went one better and wrapped up a home win for the second year in a row, having won in GP3 last year – although due to a disqualification to initial winner Dorian Boccolacci. Hubert said in the F2 press conference that he was really motivated to go for the win after seeing the Tricolore flags during the Feature race.
“Monaco was maybe half of a home race but this is 100% a home race so I’m really, really happy. I’m really proud,” said Hubert.
“It was such a nice feeling to hear La Marseillaise on the top step and see all of the French flags around the track. I saw them yesterday so I was really motivated to get that win today. The weekend didn’t start very well but today the car was really good.
“We managed well and I had a good start. The race just seemed a bit long. I just wanted it to end! I’m really, really happy with this win.”
The start of the weekend for Hubert proved to be challenging as during qualifying, his engine was overheating which prevented him from setting a hot lap. He ended the session down in fifteenth with a lot of work to do to recover his weekend.
Hubert and his Arden team managed to recover places as multiple drivers dropped out of the race and used the alternative strategy to their favour, ending the race in eighth place and putting himself in reverse grid pole for Sunday’s race.
The result ultimately led to his second win in the series and a boost to his status in the drivers’ championship as he lies seventh, two points behind UNI-Virtuosi Racing‘s Luca Ghiotto. ART Grand Prix‘s Nyck de Vries took the Feature race win and surpassed Nicholas Latifi to become the new championship leader.
Hubert reflects on his weekend saying the win at the end was a great feeling after a bad start overall at the Circuit Paul Ricard, hailing his turnaround and the win as a great achievement.
“We’re missing some pace and in qualy I also had an overheating engine, so that didn’t help us, but there are still some parts of the weekend that we need to work on,”
“We still don’t really know why we were missing so much pace. The car felt quite good but obviously we are missing some grip. We need to work on this because our Feature Races are always good but if we start from a better position they will still be good. We could maybe finish in the top five or maybe on the podium in the first race. We need to work on this and then like I said, my first race was good which is quite often the case.
“We have a good race pace, we are good in tyre management. We still miss something in the pit stops but I was happy to get back to P8 and I knew I had the pace for today.
“In the end it’s such a great feeling after a really bad start to the weekend to go away with a win and 19 points I think. It’s a really great achievement for sure.”