SAKHIR (Bahrain): Promising Indian driver Jehan Daruvala created history when he became the first Indian to win a Formula 2 race during the Sakhir Grand Prix on Sunday. A thrilling battle against F2 champion Mick Schumacher and Daniel Ticktum saw the 22-year-old Indian emerge on top in the support race of the season-ending Formula 1 Grand Prix.
Jehan, driving for Rayo Racing, had a good launch from second on the grid and was up alongside pole sitter Daniel Ticktum.
Ticktum squeezed Jehan on the inside which allowed Schumacher to go around the outside of both of them.
Eventually, Ticktum emerged in the lead, followed by Schumacher and Jehan in third. A few corners later, Jehan made a good move to pass Schumacher and get into second position.
P1!!✅…Feels really good to end the season on a high..A big thank you to team and everyone who’s supported me t… https://t.co/yN6ZjByxPX
— Jehan Daruvala (@DaruvalaJehan) 1607265069000
A few laps later, Schumacher passed Jehan, to relegate him to third.
Jehan, however, did not give up. A thrilling battle ensued and eventually the Indian got past Schumacher once again, to reclaim his second spot.
Jehan then reeled off a series of quick laps to catch the race leader. However, he was unable to overtake.
The perfect way to finish your rookie season Congratulations on your first #F2 win, @DaruvalaJehan #SakhirGP… https://t.co/olm6TM934h
— Formula 2 (@FIA_F2) 1607263300000
The battle for the lead intensified as Ticktum seemed desperate to win the last race of the season.
Jehan, however, kept his cool and maintained the pressure. His excellent race craft forced the race leader to start making mistakes, but Jehan found it tough to get past Ticktum.
Eventually with less than 10 laps to go, Jehan made another fantastic move to get past Ticktum and grab the lead.
Thereafter, Jehan drove well to slowly start opening up a gap and finally took the chequered flag to win his maiden FIA Formula 2 race.
His Japanese teammate Yuki Tsunoda was second, over 3.5 seconds behind Jehan, while Ticktum was third.
“Motorsport is pretty big in India. We obviously have a lot of people, so I have a big fan base back home, and my goal at the end of the day is to make myself and my country proud.
“(I have) to prove to people from back home that even though we don’t have the same facilities and stuff that guys have in Europe, as long as you can work hard you can fight right at the sharp end of the grid,” Jehan said.