Jeddah (Saudi Arabia), March 19 (IANS):India’s Jehan Daruvala raced to his 16th Formula 2 podium on Saturday with a hard-fought third-place finish in the Sprint race of the championship’s Saudi Arabian round, here. The 24-year-old MP Motorsport driver started fifth and was hustling eventual winner Ayumu Iwasa for the win but dropped to third just three laps from the end after making a daring bid for the lead that very nearly earned him his first win of the season.Max Verstappen Cruises to F1 Bahrain Grand Prix 2023 Win.
Still, he crossed the line just over a second behind Iwasa and less than half a second behind runner-up Victor Martins to score his second successive podium around the barrier-lined, high-speed sweeps of the Red Sea track.
”To be honest, there are a bunch of mixed emotions,” said Jehan after the race on Saturday.
”I would definitely say I was disappointed I didn’t win because the car was very good and I had a lot of pace today but also not disappointed because I took a lot of risks.
I have no regrets. I tried to win the race and, in the end, it didn’t pay off,” he added.
Jehan made a lightning start off the line but was boxed in by the Campos cars of Ralph Boschung and compatriot Kush Maini.
A second-lap safety car that bunched the field up gave him a shot at passing Maini and Jehan duly seized the opportunity to muscle his way past his fellow Indian and set off in pursuit of Red Bull-backed racer Jak Crawford.
Jehan dispatched Crawford on Lap 7 just seconds before a collision between Theo Pourchaire and Oliver Bearman triggered a second safety car period.
Jehan was hot on second-placed Boschung’s heels as the race got underway. The Swiss racer was powerless to resist the MP Motorsport racer’s charge as he swept around the outside of Turn 1 to take second.
He then battled Iwasa, while also keeping the rapid Martins behind him at bay, before ultimately having to concede after his turn 1 gamble for a fifth F2 win failed to pay off.Saudi Arabian GP 2023 Live Streaming Online: Get Live Telecast Details of F1 Race From Jeddah Corniche Circuit on TV in India.
The podium was Jehan’s first of the season. Set to move up one spot on the grid to fourth after a penalty for Theo Pourchaire, he has a good chance of completing a podium sweep.
Jehan, however, is eyeing victory.
”All in all, I’m happy,” he said.
”I think I can even fight for the win tomorrow in the Feature Race,” he added.
(The above story first appeared on LatestLY on Mar 19, 2023 07:52 PM IST. For more news and updates on politics, world, sports, entertainment and lifestyle, log on to our website latestly.com).