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F1 Academy: Carrie Schreiner takes maiden single seater win in Zandvoort

Carrie Schreiner took a breakthrough first F1 Academy victory in Zandvoort's second race, after holding off championship leader Marta García and the fast charging Léna Bühler in a drama-filled reverse grid race.

Photo by: Racers - Behind the Helmet

Carrie Schreiner took a breakthrough first F1 Academy victory in Zandvoort's second race, after holding off championship leader Marta García and the fast charging Léna Buhler in a dramatic-filled reverse grid race. Seven years after her last season in formula cars, Schreiner made her return to F4 in F1 Academy, joining ART Grand Prix in the championshipìs inaugural season. The young German made huge improvements across the first weekends, steadily moving up the ranks as she got re-acclimated to single-seaters, having spent several years in GT racing. At the midpoint of the season, Schreiner showed an even greater step forward: she was among the protagonists of testing at Aragon, where she was third fastest throughout the first day, before heading to Zandvoort for the fourth round of the season, where she collected her personal best in race 1 with a sixth place finish. The second race, contested on Sunday morning at 08:40 local time, was the perfect opportunity to battle for her first podium, as her seventh fastest time in Q1 put her on the front row of the grid, alongside reverse pole sitter Amna Al Qubaisi. The Emirati had already won two reverse-grid races this year and has been arguably the most consistent driver on the field with a 10-race streak of consecutive point scoring races. The 20-minute contest got underway with Al Qubaisi retaining the lead over Schreiner - while a spectacular start from fifth saw championship leader Marta García moving into third, ahead of Emely de Heus and Jessica Edgar, who lost 2 places. After the heartbreaking DNF on Saturday, García had in fact lost 30 points in a single day to Hamda Al Qubaisi - who had the perfect score with two pole positions, a fastest lap and a race win. Following her dominant performance, Hamda Al Qubaisi would need to charge from eighth on the grid in Race 2: Hamda, though, lost eighth after Bianca Bustamante got ahead on the first lap. There was drama on the second lap, as her sister Amna, who had already opened a second gap to Schreiner, went off at turn 8 and retired, bringing out the safety car. It would be Amna's first non-point scoring race of the season. The race was back underway with 11 minutes to go and Schreiner had a big task: defending from Prema's Marta García and a charging pack. The German though had a strong restart and, just behind, Emely de Heus, Jessica Edgar and Léna Bühler went three wide into turn 1. Following her maiden victory at Barcelona, de Heus has found plenty of pace and the Dutchwoman seemed able to challenge García - before she was overtaken by Edgar on lap five and then had the recovering Léna Bühler right behind - in an action-packed moment the race. Bühler cleared de Heus one lap later and already had Edgar in her target. The Swiss driver was on a mission and overtook Edgar for third; the Sauber Academy member clearly had the pace to aim for the top and hunted down Marta García while Schreiner kept a half a second safe margin in the lead. Hamda Al Qubaisi, on the other hand, was struggling to recover from ninth, as well as Pulling in tenth: both the championship front runners needed to catch up with Bustamante and Gilkes ahead to aim for points but couldn't get close enough. All eyes, though, were on the battle for the win as Schreiner, García, Bühler and Edgar were separated by tenths of a second coming into the final minute of the race: the battle for second, though, ended playing in Schreiner's favour and the ART Grand Prix driver could secure her first ever victory in single seaters, in a masterful second race at Zandvoort. Marta García overturned her unlucky Saturday with a second place which gives the Valencian some breathing space again in the drivers' standings. From seventh on the grid, Léna Bühler was the biggest mover in race 2 and added yet another podium - the sixth so far - to her tally. Jessica Edgar had a really strong race in fourth - the second consecutive one after race 1; the Brit preceded Emely de Heus, also repeating her race 1 result. Sixth across the finish line, Nerea Martí was not far behind and preceded Megan Gilkes and Bianca Bustamante in the points-paying positions. With ninth, Hamda Al Qubaisi was just outside the top 8, as well as Abbi Pulling. The Carlin driver, though, bags the extra point for the fastest lap, having clocked a 1:37.691 on the ninth lap. Lola Lovinfosse and Chloe Grant were 11th and 12th; Maite Caceres overtook Chloe Chong at the start and held on to P13 throughout the race, finishing fourth tenth ahead of the British racer. With her second place, Marta García further extends her gap in the points standings by 8 points; Léna Bühler, on the other hand, closes in on Hamda Al Qubaisi, now 17 points ahead. F1 Academy's tyre supplier Pirelli is supplying two extra new slick tyres from this weekend - bringing the total up to 4 new sets compared to the previous 3,5. It will therefore be crucial to see who has saved the best set for the final 30 minute race, scheduled for this afternoon at 17:25 local time.



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