We love motorsport for this kind of magic! Tadasuke Makino surely didn’t seem to be a contender for the Feature Race win when he started from P14. But the Honda protégé started on the Medium/Supersoft strategy – one of the only three drivers to have opted to go that route. A superb opening lap took him all the way to eighth position and he then carved his way to second place – slotting in behind his teammate Artem Markelov whom he passed for the lead on Lap 5. From then on, he drove flawlessly to build a gap of over 40 seconds to the Russian ace – a margin big enough that Makino could observe his mandatory pitstop on Lap 27 and rejoin a couple of seconds ahead of Markelov. He then kept a cool head for the final three laps to stun the rest of the field, lead a RUSSIAN TIME 1-2, and take a first F2 victory!
His teammate Markelov was also back on the podium last weekend – with P4 on the grid, he quickly got into the lead at the start. On the Option/Prime strategy, he offered little resistance when Makino attacked him on Lap 5, but was convinced he could get back into P1 when the Japanese driver was to pit for Supersofts. He was bemused to see his teammate return to the circuit ahead of him, but was pleased with a strong result for the team in the Feature Race. On Sunday, Markelov made a strong start from P7 to P3. He then passed first George Russell and later Nicholas Latifi to lead the race until a small mistake opened the door for Championship leader Russell to pass for the win. With 32 points added to his tally, Markelov is the highest point-scorer in Italy, just ahead of his home event at Sochi.