5 Things We Learned From: 2024 Spanish GP F1 Academy Weekend

2024 Spanish Gp F1 Academy Weekend
2024 Spanish Gp F1 Academy Weekend

Chloe Chambers took control of Race 2 as the lights went out and never looked back. Driving off into the distance, the Haas driver took her first F1 ACADEMY victory in a dominant fashion, finishing 6.6s clear.

Here are five things we learned from the F1 Academy weekend in Spain.

Pole-sitter Abbi Pulling lost the lead into Turn 1 and couldn’t match Chambers’ pace, as she had to fend off moves from Nerea Martí and Hamda Al Qubaisi. Hamda Al Qubaisi bided her time, pouncing on Martí as the Spaniard’s tyres faded to seal her and MP Motorsport’s first podium of the 2024 campaign.

After a difficult start in Race 1, Chambers had no such struggles this time around, getting the jump on Pulling for the lead. Campos Racing teammate Martí also tried to make her way past the Alpine driver but couldn’t quite find the room.

Doriane Pin endured another difficult start, dropping down from P3 to P6, whilst Pulling narrowly avoided the gravel, bouncing over the kerbs at Turn 9. Bianca Bustamante and Jessica Edgar were forced to take to the escape road at the opening chicane, with both handed 5-second penalties after a false start for the McLaren driver and Edgar for leaving the track and gaining an advantage.

Chambers immediately broke clear of the pack, building a 1-second advantage by the start of Lap 4. Further back, Bustamante and Pin went side-by-side into Turn 4, with the Mercedes driver nudging past for P5. Lia Block had the tow on Edgar, sweeping past the American Express driver for seventh.

A four-car battle for second unfolded as Pulling, Martí, Hamda Al Qubaisi and Pin were all separated by less than a second. Struggling with oversteer, Pulling had to go on the defensive. The threat of Martí petered out as the Spaniard’s left rear tyre looked worse for wear.

Sensing an opportunity on Lap 12, Hamda Al Qubaisi tucked up behind the Tommy Hilfiger driver. Claiming the racing line on the left, the Red Bull Racing driver had already got the move done halfway down the straight, slamming the door shut on Martí at the apex of Turn 1.

Out front, Chambers showed no signs of slowing, extending her lead to over seven seconds with three laps to go. Meanwhile, Hamda Al Qubaisi was all over the back of Pulling, as Martí dropped back by second in fourth.

Lola Lovinfosse was on the move, dispatching Rodin Motorsport teammate Edgar for P9 through Turn 11. With her tyres well-past their cliff, Edgar’s chances of points evaporated, dropping down from ninth to the back of the field in a matter of corners.

Up ahead, nobody could touch Chambers as she claimed her and Haas’ first win ahead of Pulling and Hamda Al Qubaisi, whilst her Campos Racing team celebrated victory at their home event.

Martí sealed fourth ahead of Pin, whilst Block earned her best-ever finish in F1 ACADEMY in sixth. Bustamante’s 5-second penalty dropped her behind the Williams driver in seventh. Hausmann added four points to her tally in eight h ahead of Lovinfosse and Emely De Heus, who secured back-to-back points finishes in Barcelona.

WHAT’S NEXT?

Pulling enters the summer break with a 66-point advantage, but she’s got close company behind, with Pin and Chambers tied on 81 points. Rodin Motorsport assume the lead of the Teams’ Standings on 176, whilst Campos Racing leapfrog PREMA Racing for second on 153.

The battle to be crowned the 2024 F1 ACADEMY champion will resume in Zandvoort for Round 4 from August 23-25.

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