F2: Calderon finishes P13 in Barcelona race 1
Mixed feelings for Colombian Tatiana Calderon as she finishes 13th in the FIA F2 feature race in Barcelona.
The FIA Formula 2 championship heads Barcelona for the start of the European season and Tatiana Calderon is ready to tackle what she calls her home race in the hunt for the first points of her campaign. The Colombian, in fact, has lived for more than eight years in the Spanish city.
Calderon had to start the feature race from the back after a grid drop penalty handed to her after the second Baku race, but after first lap incidents between Schumacher and Alesi and, a little further up the order, bewteen polesitter Ghiotto and Boccolacci, the Colombian managed to stay out of trouble and immediately made some positions.
The Safety car was deployed to remove Alesi's Trident and the first pitstops started early.
Calderon went a bit longer on her stint as in the previous rounds and by lap 9 she found herself in 7th.
Starting on the soft compound, she couldn't extend her stint much longer, and pitted on lap 11 for some fresh Prime tyres but was relegated back to P17.
Calderon's second stint started on a slow note, but her pace kept improving and was ultimately pretty consistent throughout.
In the positions in front, BWT Arden teammate Antoine Hubert was on a mission and became the faster man on track on used primes, as he went for the alternate strategy and battled for the lead with Boschung. UNI Virtuosi's Zhou was the first of the drivers who already pitted, in 6th.
Calderon moved up to P15 after Correa had to retire for a technical failure, but was then past by Boccolacci on new tyres.
On lap 25, she managed to get past Raghunathan and catched Boccolacci again, after her pace had stabilized on the 1:35-low. Their battle will go on for a while, before Tatiana finally overtook the French driver for 14th position.
A recovering Schumacher had to pit again for a new front wing, allowing Calderon to move up to 13th.
At the front, Hubert and King finally pitted and came out P8 and P9 respectively, but with time running out to catch Zhou and Latifi, who had played the waiting game.
Tatiana proved herself faster in this second stint with the hard compound and with few laps to go, she was almost one second quicker than Deletraz in front, but with not enough laps left to catch him.
Latifi attacked Zhou around the outside turn one and completed the move for the victory. Zhou was robbed of the second place as well after the charging Aitken overtook the Virtuosi car, now struggling for grip.
As Latifi won for the third time in five races, Calderon took the checkered flag in P13 once again, after her season debut in Bahrain.
"Not the position we want to be in, but good progress made in terms of pace. Ready for long and exciting race tomorrow" - commented the Colombian.
The second race will take off on Sunday's morning at 11:30 local time.
In her words:
“Difficult day overall, we showed some good pace at times though, taking the positives and full attack from P13 tomorrow!”
Ph credits: F2 Media