Motorsport: Liam Lawson gets Formula 2 campaign back on track with strong performance at French Grand Prix


Liam Lawson scored points in both races of the Formula 2 French Grand Prix. Photo/Getty Images.

Kiwi Formula 2 driver Liam Lawson improved his position in the season standings, sustaining a sprint race with strong points from the French Grand Prix main race.

Heading into the event in sixth place overall, Lawson walked away from the event at Circuit Paul Ricard by adding 19 points to his tally, taking his tally for the season to 79 after nine of 14 stops on the schedule.

The season has been a rollercoaster for the Red Bull junior. The 20-year-old had a strong start to the campaign ahead of a torrid run in which he picked up just 10 points from 10 races – with eight of those 10 points coming in the lowest-rated sprint races and only two points on five distance races. in this interval. He was forced to retire from three of those five races.

However, Lawson managed to score points in each of the last three features, adding a sixth place in France to a 10th in Austria a fortnight ago and a podium finish in England the previous week.

Prior to the event, Lawson hoped his woes would be behind him, but admitted there were still issues he was trying to resolve.

“We’ve always had a really solid car, but a lot of things happened earlier in the year. We were really unlucky with things and races that I didn’t finish,” Lawson told “Until Silverstone I hadn’t finished a race properly in the points since the first lap, so from my side it’s been a really tough start to the year.

“Now that things have sort of settled down, we have unfortunately encountered new problems, so from my side, that’s where I’m fighting.

“The team are doing a great job on their end; the car is really, really good. I just hope we can sort this out for the rest of the season.”

The weekend started off in terrific form for Lawson, who impressed with his passing of Felipe Drugovich, Jehan Daruvala and fellow Kiwi Marcus Armstrong to win the sprint race. He continued that form with a solid drive in the cross-country run, rising from ninth on the grid to sixth.

Lawson wasted no time trying to improve his position, moving up two spots on the opening lap. He managed to hold on to his place in an effort to get a decent number of points, but it wasn’t until lap 20 that he was able to improve again from seventh in the peloton – himself being allocated a place when Amaury Cordeel entered the pit lane. . Lawson finished comfortably in sixth place – three seconds behind fifth but eight seconds ahead of seventh.

But while Lawson’s fortunes seem to be heading in the right direction, the same can’t be said for Armstrong.

Marcus Armstrong was forced to retire without having completed a single lap in the last two races.  Photo/Getty Images
Marcus Armstrong was forced to retire without having completed a single lap in the last two races. Photo/Getty Images

After being forced off the track twice – once by Hitech GP teammate Jiri Vips – and receiving a five-second penalty after being judged for causing a collision, Armstrong was unable to capitalize on an excellent starting position in the sprint race.

Things only got worse for the Kiwi rider in the cross-country race as, for the second event in a row, he was out of the race without completing a single lap – being sent spinning after contact with David Beckmann at turn 13.

Without taking any points from the weekend, Armstrong dropped to 10th overall with 69 points. The Brazilian driver Drugovich remains the man to catch up with 173 points.

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