A thrilling battle against F2 champion Mick Schumacher and later Daniel Ticktum saw the 22-year-old Indian emerge on top in the support race of the season-ending Formula 1 Grand Prix.
Daruvala, driving for Rayo Racing, had a good launch from second on the grid and was up alongside pole sitter Daniel Ticktum.
Ticktum squeezed Daruvala on the inside, which allowed Schumacher to go around the outside of both of them. Eventually, Ticktum emerged in the lead, followed by Schumacher and Daruvala in third. A few corners later, Daruvala made a good move to pass Schumacher and get into second.
A few laps later, Schumacher passed Daruvala, to relegate him to third. A thrilling battle ensued and eventually the Indian got past Schumacher once again, to reclaim his second spot.
Daruvala then reeled off a series of quick laps to catch the race leader. However, he was unable to overtake him.Daruvala’s persistence forced the race leader to start making mistakes, but he found it tough to get past Ticktum. Eventually, with less than 10 laps to go, Daruvala made another fantastic move to get past Ticktum and grab the lead.
Thereafter, he drove well to slowly start opening up a gap and finally took the chequered flag to win his maiden FIA Formula 2 race.
His Japanese teammate Yuki Tsunoda – who had won the feature race on Saturday — was second, over 3.5 seconds behind Daruvala, while Ticktum was third.
“Motorsport is pretty big in India. We obviously have a lot of people, so I have a big fan base back home, and my goal at the end of the day is to do myself and my country proud. (I have) to prove to people from back home that even though we don’t have the same facilities and stuff that guys have in Europe, as long as you can work hard you can fight right at the sharp end of the grid,” Daruvala said after the race.