MRF Challenge: Drugovich wins Race 2 from sixth in Abu Dhabi
A Race 1 top 6 reserve-grid saw Danial Frost starting on pole alongside Alex Karkosik in Race 2 at the Yas Marina Circuit in the Abu Dhabi MRF Challenge race week, with Louis Gachot and Julien Falchero on row two.
The opening lap saw Frost keep his lead, but the Singaporean was defending from Gachot after Karkosik dropped ground to be fifth ahead of Martono - with Falchero and Drugovich also clearing the Polish driver in the process to be third and fourth respectively.
However, a tussle between Frost and Gachot for the race lead ended up in a disaster with the Singaporean retiring, bringing out the safety car on Lap 2, while Gachot continued in fourth position - handing the lead briefly to Falchero.
But just before the safety car was out, Drugovich saw an opportunity to take on Falchero and claim the race lead. In three laps, the Brazilian went from sixth to first - further impressing with his capability in the winter championship.
After four laps behind the safety car, it was finally pulled in at the end of Lap 6 with Drugovich then building up a commanding lead to win for the sixth time in the season, as Falchero took his fourth podium with Karkosik completing the rostrum positions.
Behind, Martono cleared Gachot for fourth on Lap 8, with the Indonesian going all out against Karkosik in the last couple of laps for the final podium place. However, with no laps remaining, Martono had to settle for a place outside the podium.
Gachot's fifth place was under threat from Nazim Azman, who took his best finish of sixth in the championship, finishing a mere 0.719s behind the Frenchman. The Malaysian had cleared Dylan Young in the process, who lost another place to Rinus van Kalmthout on the final lap.
The Dutchman started in 17th position after a DNF on Thursday and made up 10 places to finish seventh, thereby salvaging some points while Drugovich further extended his lead in the drivers' standings. The Top 10 was rounded off by Harri Jones and Henning Enqvist.
Outside the points scoring positions, in the lead in 11th was once again Manuel Maldonado, who was followed by a mere 0.207s by Michalengelo Amendola. In 13th was Richard Wagner, while Kurt Hill, Pavan Ravishankar, Perdana Putra Minang and Robert Megennis were the rest of the finishers.
The Indonesian dropped out of the Top 10 in the opening lap from ninth and went down hill then on, while Megennis was forced to pit at end of Lap 1, which saw him finish a lap down on the leaders. Meanwhile, the stewards are looking into two incidents, the first one is of early leader Frost, while the second incident is for track limits with Falchero.