Briton finishes ahead of Mathéo Tuscher and Kevin Mirocha
Luciano Bacheta continued his unbeaten record to secure his third victory from three races during yesterday's (Saturday) FIA Formula Two race at Portimão.
The 22-year-old led from pole and was untroubled for much of the race until the closing stages when 15-year-old Mathéo Tuscher began to close in on him. The Swiss teenager showed superb pace and tyre management to get within one second of Bacheta and inside the championship's new Boost Zone but was unable to topple him, settling for second and becoming the youngest driver in the new era of F2 to secure a podium.
Polish racer Kevin Mirocha also picked up his maiden podium after getting a good start from fourth on the grid and driving a controlled race to build a comfortable cushion to the battling pair of Markus Pommer and David Zhu behind him.
21-year-old Pommer, who had lined up second on the grid, got too much wheel spin off the line to drop him down to fifth behind a charging Zhu. The two then battled throughout the race, in particularly across the start/finish line and into Turn 1, with the Chinese racer defending superbly until the quicker German eventually got past.
Outside the top five, Daniel McKenzie lost out on his P5 start to finish 13th, while Christopher Zanella secured sixth place after a tangle with Mihai Marinescu going into Turn 1. Marinescu drove well to recover from his spin to finish 10th but now drops to fourth in the drivers' standings.
Swiss driver Alex Fontana held onto his seventh place after enduring a great midfield battle which included Dino Zamparelli who crossed the line eighth ahead of fellow countryman Hector Hurst. Victor Guerin enjoyed a solid F2 debut gaining three places from P14 to finish just outside the top 10.
Speaking afterwards a delighted Bacheta, who dedicated the win to his mother on her birthday, said: "That felt pretty good! I was relieved to see the chequered flag because I knew Mathéo would be boosting behind me in the last few laps. I wasn't really looking at my pit board as I had my eyes fixed on my mirrors!"
F2 Results: Portugal Race 1:
1. Luciano Bacheta, 22 laps2. Mathéo Tuscher, +0.309s 3. Kevin Mirocha, +16.307s4. Markus Pommer, +19.801s 5. David Zhu, +24.106s 6. Christopher Zanella, +27.176s 7. Alex Fontana, +37.164s8. Dino Zamparelli, +40.965s9. Hector Hurst, +40.965s 10. Mihai Marinescu, +41.366s11. Victor Guerin, +42.260s12. Mauro Calamia, +42.797s13. Daniel McKenzie, +43.311s14. Kourosh Khani, +43.703s15. Plamen Kralev, +49.179s16. Parthiva Sureshwaren, +50.177s17. Max Snegirev, +1:00.114s