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Bortolotti is 2011 FIA Formula Two champion.
Mirko Bortolotti brought down the curtain on the 2011 FIA Formula Two championship with a brace of imperious victories in the season finale at Barcelona, Spain, on October 29/30th. In doing so, the 21 year old Austro-Italian racked up a championship winning seventh win in the sixteen race series, and book-ended his year which began with victory in one of the season openers at Silverstone in April.
Bortolotti’s achievement set a new championship record of 316 points and equalled the previous number of race wins recorded by Andy Soucek in 2009. Mirko now goes on to his championship prize of an official Williams F1 test drive, and has his sights set on competing in the spectacular DTM (German Touring Car) championship in 2012 – the series that launched Paul Di Resta on his burgeoning F1 career with Force India.
Bortolotti had sewn up the 2011 F2 championship in one of the two previous races at Monza, Italy, so much of the attention in Barcelona was focused on the fight for the two runner-up spots which carried an official GP2 test and F1 international FIA ‘Super Licences’ for the top three finishers in the series.
Five drivers were in with a chance, but the most likely candidates appeared to be Switzerland’s Christopher Zanella, and the two Spaniards, Mike Monras and Roman Piñeiro. Which is pretty much the way the issue was resolved, with Zanella doing just enough to finish second on 195 points by securing 6th and 7th place results in the two Barcelona races, and Piñeiro winding up third on 185 points with third and second place finishes in the two Spanish contests.
Between them, the three championship table-toppers predictably claimed most of the race wins during the season, each scoring at least one two-race ‘clean sweep’. Monras, plus Britain’s Will Bratt and Jack Clarke and Romania’s Mihai Marinescu were the only other drivers to mount the top step of the podium during 2011, with Monras and Marinescu– who scored a brilliant maiden victory at Monza - finishing the championship in fourth and fifth places.
Sixth place went through dogged consistency – including a podium finish at MagnyCours - to Germany’s Tobias Hegewald, while in seventh place, F2 returnee Alex Brundle showed excellent qualifying and race pace - particularly at Magny- Cours and Monza - but was too often the victim of sheer bad luck. Just two points behind Brundle in eighth place, Jack Clarke had an up and down season, but when he was really ‘on it’, showed what he was capable of. His victory and third place in his home events at Brands Hatch were rightly cheered to the rafters.
For James Cole, driving the Comma sponsored No 2 car, it was a long season of learning and coming to grips with the big step up to from junior formulae to F2. Nevertheless, his finishing record was 100%, and with points scoring finishes in the second half of the year and maximum mileage now under his belt, he can draw on his hard-earned experience to approach the 2012 season with increased confidence.
Comma has been Technical Partner to FIA Formula Two, and the exclusive supplier of engine oils, coolants and maintenance chemicals to the Championship since it was launched in 2009. All 24 of the identical 500bhp Williams F1 designed Formula Two race cars are lubricated, cooled and serviced with maintenance products supplied by Comma.
You can read detailed race reports; view the final 2011 Championship standings and keep up with all the other latest FIA Formula Two news at the excellent official Formula Two website.
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