Bustamante clinches podium in F1 Academy debut

Luisa Morales - Philstar.com
Bustamante clinches podium in F1 Academy debut
Bianca Bustamante
Instagram / Prema Racing

MANILA, Philippines — Bianca Bustamante's first race weekend in the inaugural F1 Academy season could not have gone any better as she zoomed right into the podium in Race 1 at the Red Bull Ring in Austria on Saturday.

Bustamante finished P2 in Race 1, where she and PREMA Racing teammate Marta Garcia completed a 1-2 finish, making the most of a front row lock out in qualifying.

The 18-year-old actually crossed the line third behind Campos Racing Nerea Marti and was initially given P3. Later on, Bustamante was promoted to P2 after Marti was disqualified from the race.

Jessica Edgar of Rodin Carlin, meanwhile, was promoted to the podium.

In Race 2, where the Top 8 drivers were placed on a reverse grid, Bustamante still ended up in the Top 10 as she finished 9th place, as MP motorsport's Amna Al Qubaisi topped the race.

Six different podium finishers were crowned after the first two races as Lena Buhler of ART Grand Prix and Lola Lovinfosse of Campos Racing finished second and third, respectively.

However, Bustamante couldn't take the momentum to Race 3 as she came up with a DNC (Did Not Compete).

The Filipina racer wasn't able to finish the race and only got in two laps before retiring for the day.

Her teammate Garcia, meanwhile, won her second race of the weekend as she topped the competition.


A post shared by Prema (@prema_team)

Al Qubaisi sisters, Hamda and Amna, completed the podium as they placed second and third, respectively.

Still, Bustamante ended up with a good weekend overall as she is currently 6th in the overall driver standings with Garcia leading the way at 58 points.

Bustamante ended up with 18 points in the two races she managed to finish in the points.

Round 2 happens next week from May 5 to 7 at Valencia in Spain.

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