After a long interval of nearly three months, the 14th and final round of this year’s FIA Formula 2 Championship in Abu Dhabi kicked off.
Ayumu Iwasa, a Honda Formula Dream Project (HFDP) driver, qualified 6th on Friday, 24 November and started from 6th in the 3rd row on the grid in the Sprint Race, where a reverse grid is applied.
Under an ambient temperature of 28°C and a track temperature of 37°C, the formation lap of the Sprint Race got underway at 4:20pm on Saturday, 25 November. After a slightly slow start, Iwasa initially dropped to 7th, but soon overtook the car in front and regained 6th place. On the opening lap, a car stopped on the track because of an accident at the back of the field and the Safety Car was brought on.
When the race resumed on Lap 6, Iwasa held onto 6th place, but the chasing pack came back hard and he dropped to 7th on Lap 7. Iwasa's pace did not improve, and on Lap 9 he was passed again by the car behind, moving down to 8th. The gap to the cars ahead gradually widened after that, and the Japanese driver held 8th place as the race entered the closing stages.
Towards the end of the race, Iwasa regained his pace and started to close the gap to the car in 7th. However he was unable to catch up with it and finished in a point-scoring position in 8th. Gaining one point, Iwasa remains 3rd in the championship standings. He is 24 points behind 2nd place and 10 points ahead of 4th place to take on the final race of the season, the Feature Race, on Sunday 26, November.