Prema remains in the hunt for the FIA Formula 2 team title today at Yas Marina, home of the final round of the 2017 season. The Italian squad saw both its drivers cross the line in the top-5 of the feature race, with Antonio Fuoco cruising to third place and Charles Leclerc ending up not too far away in fourth.
The rookie pairing, supported by the Ferrari Driver Academy, was once again extremely competitive. The young Italian rebounded from a tough start to end up with his fifth podium finish out of the last seven races with the help of Leclerc, who recovered from the sixth spot on the grid. After battling during the opening lap, the two Prema drivers played it fair to maximize the chances for the team and, in the closing lap, Leclerc let Fuoco take advantage of his full potential and score extremely valuable points for his own championship campaign.
Strategy-wise, the Monegasque went for a late pit stop on lap 23, while Fuoco went for the opposite approach, starting with the option compound and moving to the prime one on lap 6 together with many top contenders. The two drivers will start from P5 and P6 respectively in tomorrow’s sprint race.
# 1 - Charles Leclerc
“I’m pretty happy with the race as we were very quick with both compounds. In the end, we let Antonio by, he deserved the podium and he’s fighting for championship positions so it’s positive for the team. Maybe we deserved the podium too because our pace was really really good, but we will try to max out tomorrow and to bring home the team championship.”
# 2 - Antonio Fuoco
“It has been a positive race, well for sure, not the start when I made a mistake and almost stalled. The pace was good though, and with the option tires the goal was to complete at least six laps but due to the traffic situations, managing the wear proved quite difficult. Then, after moving to prime tires we were a little bit too conservative but in the final laps, we showed that the pace was there and the car was performing really well. I want to thank Charles for the last lap because he did a great job and played it really fair, and I also want to thank the team.“