Starting from second on the grid, Armstrong made a solid start and got ahead of Williams F1 junior Logan Sargeant, who started the race from reverse pole position.

The Hitech driver then controlled the race from the front, resisting pressure from Daruvala, who showed impressive race pace in the Prema.

The Indian driver couldn't get close to make the most of the DRS, allowing Armstrong to take the victory.

It was another impressive drive from the Kiwi after he was dropped by Ferrari's young driver academy ahead of the season.

Reigning F3 champion Dennis Hauger completed the podium behind Armstrong and Daruvala after gaining at the start of the race.

Dirty air proved to be more prevalent than in F1 with cars struggling to follow each other in the middle sector of the lap.

This led to a mostly lacklustre second half of the race after the early Safety Car stoppage.

Roy Nissany finished fourth after getting past Theo Pourchaire at the start, securing his best result of the year.

F2 points leader Felipe Drugovich, Logan Sargeant, Theo Pourchaire and Liam Lawson rounded out the points-paying positions at Imola.

Ayumu Iwasa narrowly missed out in the end in P9 ahead of Frederik Vesti.

Drugovich remains in the lead of the standings

The Brazilian has a 14-point lead over Lawson going into Sunday's feature race at Imola.

Daruvala moves up to third on 33 points ahead of Verschoor (32), Armstrong (30) and Vips (30).

Pourchaire in on 27 points in seventh ahead of Boschung (17), Hauger (14) and Jake Hughes (14).

Nissany moves up to 11th overall on 13 points after his best race of the year.

Mercedes F1 junior Vesti is still yet to get off the mark in 18th.

Click here for the full FIA Formula 2 sprint race results at Imola