Jack Doohan wins his third race of the season as Théo Pourchaire suffers an early retirement.
Drugovich led the field by some margin as soon as the lights went out after a difficult start for those behind him. Enzo Fittipaldi and Logan Sargeant struggled to get away which subsequently opened the door for Jack Doohan in fourth.
Théo Pourchaire pulled to the side of the track with a mechanical issue on the third lap of the race. An unfortunate turn of events for the championship contender who was looking to continue to close the gap between himself and Drugovich.
After battling with Liam Lawson for fourth position, Fittipaldi was the first of the frontrunners to pit on Lap 8, followed by Sargeant and five others. The leading quartet stayed out.
Lawson eventually came into the pits one lap later but suffered a relatively slow stop. He came out ahead of Fittipaldi in their challenge for net fourth. The pair managed to undercut David Beckmann who was ahead of them before the pit stop stages.
The lead changed hands as the undercut proved to be powerful in Spa as pitting only one lap earlier gave Doohan the lead of the race. The gap between the two was over four seconds by the end of Lap 12 as Drugovich struggled to get temperature into his tyres.
Amaury Cordeel and Marino Sato held up Doohan and brought the gap between himself and Drugovich to under a second. Eventually, Doohan was able to put some distance between himself and the championship leader but Cordeel’s defence seemingly hurt Doohan’s tyres.
Richard Verschoor pitted on Lap 17 as the leading driver on the alternate strategy. He came out in ninth position and showed his pace immediately with multiple purple sectors. By lap 20, he made his way up to fourth position and began to chip into the eight second gap between himself and Lawson.
A stranded Campos brought out the Virtual Safety Car on the penultimate lap of the race. Lirim Zendeli pulled to the side of the track at Turn 9 with what looked like a mechanical issue.
Doohan held off Drugovich to take the chequered flag. After finishing second in Saturday’s Sprint Race, the young Aussie put in an impressive race one day later to take the top step. He would be joined on the podium by championship leader by __ points and yesterday’s winner, Lawson who was able to hold off a charging Verschoor.
Image credits: Daniel Coyle