Bacheta dominates at Silverstone

The 2012 FIA Formula Two Championship got underway at Silverstone this weekend. In qualifying for the first race it was rookie teenager Mathéo Tuscher who impressed most, taking pole in 1:46.851, nearly 4 seconds faster than the pole time last season, showing how much the JPH1B has been improved. The top 10 drivers were all within a second of Tuscher’s pole, with Luciano Bacheta 2nd and Christopher Zanella 3rd. Markus Pommer, who had been impressive in pre-season testing, only managed two laps, spinning at Luffield, ending his session prematurely.

Grid for Silverstone Race 1

1. Mathéo Tuscher 1:46.851
2. Luciano Bacheta 1:47.058
3. Christopher Zanella 1:47.113
4. Mihai Marinescu 1:47.183
5. Alex Fontana 1:47.257
6. Dino Zamparelli 1:47.263
7. Daniel McKenzie 1:47.487
8. Hector Hurst 1:47.755
9. Kevin Mirocha 1:47.831
10. David Zhu 1:47.839
11. Plamen Kralev 1:47.933
12. Mauro Calamia 1:48.413
13. Kourosh Khani 1:48.708
14. Parthiva Sureshwaren 1:48.791
15. Samuele Buttarelli 1:48.873
16. José Luis Abadín 1:48.947
17. Markus Pommer 1:51.181

In the first race Luciano Bacheta performed magnificently to win, despite a poor start, which saw him drop to 4th.  Last season’s runner-up Christopher Zanella was best off the line, passing Bacheta before capitalising on a mistake by Mathéo Tuscher to take the lead.  For much of the race Zanella was able to keep his lead, despite having to hold off Mihai Marinescu for a while.  This battle for the lead allowed Bacheta, who had fought his way back to 3rd, to catch the pair, first passing Marinescu before closing the gap on Zanella and taking the lead with a great pass at Luffield.

While Marinescu might have thought he was set to take 3rd place and a podium finish, on the final lap he was passed by Alex Fontana, who made it 3 Swiss drivers on the podium.  Pole-sitter Mathéo Tuscher was punished for making a few errors in the race, and was only able to convert pole into a 6th place finish.  Markus Pommer, despite starting from last place on the grid, managed to fight his way through the field to finish 8th.  Iranian Kourosh Khani rounded off the point-scoring positions, meaning that he managed to take a point on his Formula Two debut.

Results of Silverstone Race 1

1. Luciano Bacheta 38:35.237
2. Christopher Zanella +0.912
3. Alex Fontana +5.267
4. Mihai Marinescu +6.154
5. Daniel McKenzie +6.240
6. Mathéo Tuscher +13.249
7. Hector Hurst +15.089
8. Markus Pommer +15.433
9. Dino Zamparelli +16.215
10. Kourosh Khani +19.231
11. David Zhu +23.958
12. Kevin Mirocha +29.686
13. José Luis Abadín +30.807
14. Mauro Calamia +31.186
15. Plamen Kralev +40.140
16. Parthiva Sureshwaren +45.832
R. Samuele Buttarelli Retired

In qualifying for race 2 it was Romanian Mihai Marinescu who pulled out the fastest lap to take pole.  For much of the 30-minute session race 1’s winner Luciano Bacheta had the fastest time, before being beaten by Alex Fontana.  With less than 10 minutes of the session remaining, however, Marinescu went fastest, taking his first pole since his maiden win at Monza last season.

Pole setter for the first race, Mathéo Tuscher, again managed to mix it at the front, qualifying 5th.  Markus Pommer showed the sort of performance he was expecting to achieve in qualifying for race 1, qualifying 10th.

Grid for Silverstone Race 2

1. Mihai Marinescu 1:46.734
2. Alex Fontana 1:47.141
3. Luciano Bacheta 1:47.146
4. Daniel McKenzie 1:47.154
5. Mathéo Tuscher 1:47.168
6. Kevin Mirocha 1:47.313
7. Dino Zamparelli 1:47.374
8. Christopher Zanella 1:47.455
9. David Zhu 1:47.501
10. Markus Pommer 1:47.542
11. Hector Hurst 1:47.788
12. Samuele Buttarelli 1:48.026
13. Parthiva Sureshwaren 1:48.220
14. Plamen Kralev 1:48.416
15. Mauro Calamia 1:48.800
16. José Luis Abadín 1:49.478
17. Kourosh Khani 1:49.579

In race 2 pole-sitter Mihai Marinescu made a clean start in light rain, as did race 1’s winner, Luciano Bacheta, passing Alex Fontana off the line to take 2nd.  Bacheta then proceeded to keep himself in Marinescu’s mirrors and wait for his chance to take the lead.  On lap 20 of 21 Bacheta saw an opening, and used his overboost facility to pass Marinescu for the lead, holding on to take the win one lap later.  Marinescu did manage to come home in 2nd, well ahead of Alex Fontana, who finished 3rd for the second time this weekend.

For the second time in his debut round Mathéo Tuscher managed to score points, going one better than his performance in race 1, finishing 5th.  David Zhu became the first Chinese driver to score points in Formula Two, taking 9th place, only just behind race 1’s runner up Christopher Zanella.  For the second race in a row Samule Buttarelli failed to complete the distance, having retired on lap 16.

Results of Silverstone Race 2

1. Luciano Bacheta 38:27.118
2. Mihai Marinescu +1.137
3. Alex Fontana +6.279
4. Daniel McKenzie +7.232
5. Mathéo Tuscher +8.202
6. Dino Zamparelli +13.461
7. Markus Pommer +16.943
8. Christopher Zanella +18.093
9. David Zhu +18.562
10. Hector Hurst +20.676
11. Kevin Mirocha +30.129
12. Mauro Calamia +37.260
13. Kourosh Khani +37.479
14. Parthiva Sureshwaren +39.053
15. Plamen Kralev +48.621
16. José Luis Abadín +1:39.053
R. Samuele Buttarelli Retired

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