F2: Tatiana Calderon retires from Le Castellet race 2
The French Formula 2 round at Circuit Paul Ricard has come to a disappointing end for Calderon, as the BWT Arden racer was forced to retire after a difficult weekend.
Calderon started from the sixth row following a 11th place finish in Saturday's feature race.
Her BWT Arden teammate and local hero Anthoine Hubert kept the lead at turn one, despite having to defend from Jack Aitken who sprinted past four competitors around the outside of the first corner.
Nicholas Latifi similarly brought himself up to third, while race 1 winner Nyck De Vries lost one position. Tatiana Calderon gave up one position and completed the first lap in 12th, chasing Ilott down through turns 1 and 4.
The young Colombian star spent her whole race battling hard in the midfield for positions, defending from Giuliano Alesi and Mick Schumacher.
At the front, a determined Aitken started to put pressure on Hubert until he had his opponent within DRS range. Rookie Correa had another convincing race, overtaking Latifi to regain third, before Zhou found his way past the Canadian as well.
Aitken tried a move for the lead, but had to back off and, soon after, the Campos driver found himself having to worry about the attacks of Correa behind. Now struggling with his tyres, the Brit had to surrender second and third positions from both Correa and Zhou.
Calderon also struggled for pace in the final stages of the race, as she went slowly down the order and with few laps left had a spin at Le Beausset corner which ultimately ended her battling weekend. A strange performance from the Alfa Romeo F1 test driver, as she had showed consistent race pace in the previous F2 rounds and she knew well the French circuit.
While her teammate sprinted away to a 2 seconds gap on second placed Correa, the DAMS drivers put on a show when Sette Camara completed a bold move on Latifi at Signes.
De Vries ended a bitter-sweet weekend losing more positions to Deletraz, Ilott and Matsushita.
After 21 laps, Hubert became the first Frenchman to win on home soil in F2, followed by Correa and Zhou. De Vries retained his freshly-gained championship lead, with a now 12 points advantage on Canadian Latifi.
Tatiana Calderon will have another chance at the Red Bull Ring, as the Formula 2 will be back on track this weekend for its first seasonal back-to-back.
Despite a challenging weekend, the Colombian scored her best F2 result so far with P11 in the feature race, managing to avoid mistakes and staying out of trouble: a positive note to take to Austria as she moves forward, hopefully sorting the issues that lately prevented her from taking the most out of the tyres on the single lap performance that would be crucial in improving her starting position.
Ph credits: F2 Media