MONACO - It doesn’t get more up-and-down than this. PERTAMINA PREMA Theodore Racing posted another second-place finish, its third of the season, in the feature race of the FIA Formula 2 Championship held today between the streets of Monte Carlo.
The result capped an outstanding performance by Sean Gelael. The Indonesian, who took-off from P12 following a tough qualifying session yesterday, delivered an amazing comeback. Moving up to P7 at the beginning, on the softer Option tires, Gelael played his early-stop strategy to the perfection and kept his nose clean even managing to overtake on one of the most difficult tracks for overtaking.
The quick race pace he had already shown in the previous rounds did the rest, enabling him to move in front of many of his contenders in the final stages.
On the other hand, Nyck De Vries had a completely opposite day. The Dutchman took-off from P2 and stayed in close pursuit of the leader, managing the eventful initial stages which featured plenty of safety car situations.
Unfortunately, while De Vries was entering the pits for his mandatory tire change, the car he had in front made a late dive into him. After rejoining the track, the damage forced the 23-year-old racer to stop in the pits for good.
Sean Gelael, #3
Qualifying Group A: P8
Race 1: P2
Fastest Lap: 1:24.003
"Being on the podium here at Monte Carlo is an amazing experience. It has been an awesome day. Our race pace has always been strong and we knew that in clean air we could move our way to the front."
"We planned to undercut a lot of guys and we stuck to that plan. It was tight in the end with Markelov coming out of the pits, but I’d take second place any day: they say that you can’t pass at Monte Carlo, but I went from P12 to P2. We can be really satisfied.”
Nyck De Vries, #4
Qualifying Group B: P2
Race 1: DNF
Fastest Lap: 1:24.886
"Everything was going well until the second safety car procedure. We made a decent start and I was following the leader quite close, our pace was good too. Then we decided to come in, so I headed for the pits and it seemed the leader was going to stay on track. Unfortunately, he decided very late to come in as well and we collided at the pit entrance. That was the end of our day.”
"Today showed mixed emotions with Nyck being forced to retire by no fault of his own after getting hit by another driver, but on the other hand, Sean produced a sensational result taking P2. We’ve seen from the last few races that Sean had the potential to get on the podium and he has certainly done it in style today. Going from twelfth to second around the historic streets of Monaco is a drive to be proud. Congratulations to Sean and the team.”