Feature Race
FIA Formula2 2023
Round 12

Starting from 12th, Iwasa finishes 13th after going off the track in an attempt to overtake

nl Zandvoort Circuit

The Feature Race of the FIA Formula 2 Round 12 Netherlands took place on Sunday, 27 August. Ayumu Iwasa, who had qualified 12th, started from P12 in Row 6 of the grid.

Starting from 12th, Iwasa finishes 13th after going off the track in an attempt to overtake

At 10.00am, the rain had just stopped before the start of the race, but the track was still wet in places, making conditions difficult. With an ambient temperature of 16°C and a track temperature of 17°C, the formation lap got underway with the Safety Car leading the pack.  As many cars had opted for dry tyres, a turbulent race was expected. Firstly, a car lost control and spun out during acceleration before the start. Immediately after the rolling start, an accident happened to the leaders at Turn 1, causing several cars to spin and go off the track, which brought on the Safety Car. Iwasa avoided the accident and finished the opening lap in 8th.

The race resumed on Lap 4. Immediately after that at Turn 1, Iwasa made a bold move to overtake the car in front from the inside, but he lost grip and went off the track. In this incident he made contact with the car on the outside and picked up a 10-second time penalty. The Japanese driver rejoined the race in last place and pitted to serve the penalty on Lap 9. During the pit stop he switched from soft to medium tyres and returned to the race in 16th.

When an accident occurred on Lap 10 and the Safety Car was brought on, almost all cars pitted. However, partially because of the penalty, Iwasa's position remained unchanged, and he had to catch up from 16th.

He closed in on the car in front, but unstable conditions on a track that is difficult to overtake meant that he was unable to pass it. This situation continued and the race entered its final stages. In the final stages of the race, on Laps 33, 35 and 38 - the final lap, when tyres on all cars were wearing out, Iwasa maintained his pace and moved ahead of the car in front to recover to 13th before he completed the race.

The stormy Feature Race saw a number of retirements among the championship leaders. Iwasa also ended up with no points, but still holds 3rd place in the championship.

Ayumu Iwasa
Ayumu Iwasa 11
I made a similar mistake at Spa-Francorchamps, and I’m only angry with myself. There is a reason why I made a mistake but I'd rather not go into that now. The cause of this is now clear and we want to take advantage of this as an area for improvement. Other than that, I think my pace and the potential of the car were not bad, but I regret that I couldn’t put it all together properly. The issue is still qualifying, and we know that if our qualifying position isn’t good, we’ll have a vicious circle in the race as well. So, we’ll do everything we can to prepare for the next race.
This time many higher-ranked rivals retired, but I wasn't conscious of it at all. Those retirements happened after my mistake, so I didn't think anything about the championship points. It’s more important that we do what we can properly first, so we’ll look at areas for improvement and prepare for the next round

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