|2016 Baku Feature Race|
The Baku City Circuit for 2016.
|Date||18 June 2016|
|Event||2016 European Grand Prix|
|Location||Baku City Circuit Baku, Azerbaijan|
|Lap length||6.003 km (3.730 mi)|
|Distance||26 laps / 156.078 km (96.982 mi)|
|Pole Sitter||Antonio Giovinazzi|
|Team||ART Grand Prix|
|Time||1:56.086 on lap 18|
|Antonio Giovinazzi||Sergey Sirotkin||Raffaele Marciello|
|Winner Team||Prema Racing|
|2016 Monaco Sprint Race||2016 Baku Sprint Race|
The 2016 Baku Feature Race, otherwise known as the 2016 Baku Race 1, was the fifth race of the 2016 FIA GP2 Series, staged at the Baku City Circuit on the 18 June 2016. The race, staged in support of the 2016 European Grand Prix, would see Antonio Giovinazzi sweep to victory in one of the most chaotic races in GP2 history.
The Ferrari Academy Driver would start the weekend in fine form, sprinting to a maiden pole position in qualifying by just 0.080s. The man edged out by Giovinazzi would be Nobuharu Matsushita, while Sergey Sirotkin and Raffaele Marciello shared the second row.
Things would not go Giovinazzi's way at the start however, with Matsushita ghosting past the Italian as the Prema bogged down. Indeed, it was such a poor getaway from the Italian that he slipped to sixth, although all of the chaos behind him ultimately stole the show.
Norman Nato proved to be the catalyst, spinning in the middle of the pack and was duly collected by Sergio Canamasas and Pierre Gasly. In attempting to avoid the melee Alex Lynn, Nicholas Latifi and Marvin Kirchhöfer all smashed into the barriers, leaving five ruined GP2/11s on the exit of turn one.
The safety car came and went to get the circuit cleared, with Marciello making the best restart, blasting past Matsushita into turn one to claim the lead. Matsushita tried to retaliate but ultimately had to relent, while Giovinazzi made two quick fire moves to claim fourth, moments before the safety car reappeared.
This time it was Philo Paz Armand who found the barriers, with all of the field taking that as their cue to get rid of their supersoft Pirelli tyres. The race then restart for all of 300 metres before a third SC period was required, caused by Arthur Pic and Artem Markelov coming together while jousting into turn one.
Matsushita was the victim at the next restart, slipping behind Nabil Jeffri, Oliver Rowland and Giovinazzi, while Marciello ran away out front. Jeffri's race was subsequently ended when his tyres lost grip on lap fourteen, while Giovinazzi took second away from Rowland before launching a series of attacks at Marciello.
It proved to be an epic duel between the two, only interrupted moments after Giovinazzi claimed the lead. The fourth and final SC of the day was required to remove Nato from the barriers, the Frenchman having bounced off his teammate, with the race restarting with just two laps to go.
Giovinazzi duly held on despite making a poor restart to claim victory, keeping Sirotkin and Marciello at bay, the Russian having slipped past the latter Italian during said restart. Rowland was next ahead of Mitch Evans, with Matsushita, Sean Gelael, Daniël de Jong, Luca Ghiotto and Gustav Malja, the last of ten drivers to see the chequered flag.
The GP2 Series headed to new territory for the third pair of races of the 2016 campaign, arriving in the Azerbaijani capital of Baku and the Baku City Circuit. Once again supporting Formula One and the returning European Grand Prix, GP2 arrived with no changes to the field, either in terms of drivers or entrants. As such all of the attention was on the new circuit, with the narrow section around the old castle expected to be a major action centre.
In terms of the Championship it was Norman Nato whom had left Monte Carlo at the head of the pack, a point clear of fellow race winner Artem Markelov after four races. Alex Lynn had ended the second weekend in third ahead of Pierre Gasly, mystified as to how he had failed to score in Monte Carlo, while Raffaele Marciello completed the top five. Elsewhere, Nobuharu Matsushita had leapt into seventh with his second victory in GP2 during the Monaco Sprint, while there were no new faces on the scoreboard lower down.
In the Teams' Championship it was Russian Time whom had emerged on top on the Mediterranean coast, eleven clear of their nearest rivals. Those opponents appeared in the form of Racing Engineering, who were themselves five ahead of DAMS, suggesting there would be a close fight for the Championship. Indeed, Prema Racing barely had half the number of points of those ahead in fourth, and were instead in danger of slipping behind some vastly more experienced outfits behind them.
The full entry list for the 2016 Baku Feature Race is displayed below:
The final qualifying result for the 2016 Baku Feature Race are outlined below:
|2016 Baku Feature Race Qualifying Result|
|1st||20||Antonio Giovinazzi||Prema Racing||1:51.752||—||1|
|2nd||1||Nobuharu Matsushita||ART Grand Prix||1:51.841||+0.089s||2|
|3rd||2||Sergey Sirotkin||ART Grand Prix||1:52.532||+0.780s||3|
|4th||9||Raffaele Marciello||Russian Time||1:52.555||+0.803s||4|
|6th||22||Oliver Rowland||MP Motorsport||1:52.739||+0.987s||6|
|8th||21||Pierre Gasly||Prema Racing||1:52.760||+1.008s||8|
|9th||3||Norman Nato||Racing Engineering||1:52.929||+1.177s||9|
|11th||4||Jordan King||Racing Engineering||1:52.962||+1.210s||11|
|12th||10||Artem Markelov||Russian Time||1:53.040||+1.288s||12|
|15th||7||Mitch Evans||Pertamina Campos Racing||1:53.401||+1.649s||15|
|17th||23||Daniël de Jong||MP Motorsport||1:54.000||+2.248s||17|
|18th||25||Jimmy Eriksson||Arden International||1:54.034||+2.282s||18|
|20th||8||Sean Gelael||Pertamina Campos Racing||1:54.717||+2.965s||20|
|21st||24||Nabil Jeffri||Arden International||1:55.333||+3.581s||21|
|22nd||14||Philo Paz Armand||Trident||1:57.692||+5.940s||22|
|107% Time: 2:05.994|
|18||Daniël de Jong|
|Philo Paz Armand||______________|
The final classification of the 2016 Baku Feature Race is displayed below:
|2016 Baku Feature Race Race Result|
|Pos.||No.||Name||Team||Laps||Race Time||Fastest lap||Pts.|
|1st||20||Antonio Giovinazzi||Prema Racing||26||1:03:05.420||1:56.473||29|
|2nd||2||Sergey Sirotkin||ART Grand Prix||26||+1.233s||1:56.946||18|
|3rd||9||Raffaele Marciello||Russian Time||26||+1.343s||1:57.072||15|
|4th||22||Oliver Rowland||MP Motorsport||26||+2.141s||1:57.588||12|
|5th||7||Mitch Evans||Pertamina Campos Racing||26||+2.628s||1:58.064||10|
|6th||1||Nobuharu Matsushita||ART Grand Prix||26||+3.110s||1:56.086||10|
|7th||8||Sean Gelael||Pertamina Campos Racing||26||+5.808s||1:58.365||6|
|8th||23||Daniël de Jong||MP Motorsport||26||+6.663s||1:58.971||4|
|11th||25||Jimmy Eriksson||Arden International||24||+2 Laps||1:58.411|
|12th||4||Jordan King||Racing Engineering||24||+2 Laps||1:58.078|
|Ret||3||Norman Nato||Racing Engineering||18||Damage||1:58.394|
|Ret||24||Nabil Jeffri||Arden International||14||Accident||1:59.148|
|Ret||10||Artem Markelov||Russian Time||7||Damage||2:00.457|
|Ret||14||Philo Paz Armand||Trident||5||Accident||2:00.900|
|Ret||21||Pierre Gasly||Prema Racing||0||Accident||—|
- Bold indicates a driver started from pole.
- Italics indicate that a driver set fastest lap.
- * Pic was handed a five place grid penalty for causing a collision.
- First time that the Baku City Circuit had hosted a GP2 Series race.
- Antonio Giovinazzi secured his maiden GP2 pole position.
- Giovinazzi claimed his maiden GP2 victory.
- It was also the Italian's first podium and points finish.
- Prema secured their first GP2 Series triumph.
- Tenth podium finish for Raffaele Marciello.
- Maiden points finishes for Sean Gelael and Luca Ghiotto.
The chaotic opening race to the Baku weekend had caused some sweeping changes in the Championship, although it was still Norman Nato who led the charge. The Frenchman remained a point ahead of Artem Markelov, with both failing to score, while Raffaele Marciello had catapulted into third ahead of Alex Lynn. Elsewhere, Antonio Giovinazzi had smashed through into the top ten from seventeenth, Pierre Gasly dropped out of the top five, and Arthur Pic continued to prop up the scorers list.
It was a similar story in the Teams' Championship, although Russian Time had actually managed to extend their lead to 26 points in spite of the chaos. Racing Engineering had likewise managed to hold onto second, although Prema Racing and DAMS had seriously closed the gap, three and four behind respectively. ART Grand Prix had also made some impressive ground, a further six off DAMS in fifth, with MP Motorsport and Campos Racing also closing on the leaders.
Only point scoring drivers and teams are shown.
Images and Videos:
- ↑ Cite error: Invalid
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- ↑ 2.00 2.01 2.02 2.03 2.04 2.05 2.06 2.07 2.08 2.09 2.10 2.11 2.12 2.13 2.14 Archived, 'GIOVINAZZI WINS DRAMATIC BAKU FEATURE RACE', gp2series.com, (GP2 Series, 18/06/2016), https://web.archive.org/web/20160623123046/http://www.gp2series.com:80/News-Room/News/2016/06_June/Giovinazzi-wins-dramatic-Baku-feature-race/, (Accessed 12/10/2018) - Original
- ↑ 3.0 3.1 Archived, 'ANTONIO GIOVINAZZI TAKES MAIDEN POLE IN BAKU', gp2series.com, (GP2 Series, 17/06/2016), https://web.archive.org/web/20160622201325/http://www.gp2series.com:80/News-Room/News/2016/06_June/Antonio-Giovinazzi-takes-maiden-pole-in-Baku/, (Accessed 12/10/2018) - Original
- ↑ 4.0 4.1 4.2 4.3 Archived, 'GP2 Series 2016 Results: Baku City Circuit', fiaformula2.com, (GP2 Series, 2016), https://web.archive.org/web/20161029221741/http://www.gp2series.com:80/Results/?raceid=963&seasonid=173, (Accessed 12/10/2018) - Original
- ↑ Archived, 'ROUND 3 POST FEATURE RACE PENALTY', gp2series.com, (GP2 Series, 18/06/2016), https://web.archive.org/web/20160625022847/http://www.gp2series.com:80/News-Room/News/2016/06_June/Round-3-post-feature-race-penalty/, (Accessed 13/10/2018) - Original