F3 EURO CHAMPIONSHIP

Lights to flag victory for Felix Rosenqvist

Season race: 5 of 33
Track: Hockenheim Grand Prix circuit
Winner: Felix Rosenqvist (Prema Powerteam)
Pole position: Felix Rosenqvist (Prema Powerteam)
Weather: sunny

Swede Felix Rosenqvist (Prema Powerteam) scored his second victory of the season in the FIA Formula 3 European Championship. At the 4.574 kilometres long Hockenheimring Baden-Württemberg, the 23-year-old stalwart had a comfortable margin of nine seconds from second-placed Charles Leclerc (Van Amersfoort Racing). In third place, points’ leader Antonio Giovinazzi (Jagonya Ayam with Carlin) continued his consistent performance with five podium places from as many races in the FIA Formula 3 European Championship. His margin in the drivers’ standings from second-placed Leclerc was reduced by three points to 15 points. Rosenqvist, in turn, is two points down on Leclerc in third place of the drivers’ standings.

In sunny conditions, Felix Rosenqvist benefited from pole position to lead the field into the first corner. Charles Leclerc slotted into second place from Maximilian Günther (kfzteile24 Mücke Motorsport). Just behind the front runners, Santino Ferrucci (kfzteile24 Mücke Motorsport) tapped Lance Stroll (Prema Powerteam) into a spin when the field drove through the hairpin for the first time. The Canadian dropped back while Ferrucci incurred a warning.

In the opening stages, third-placed Günther was mainly busy with defending his position, because Giovinazzi put him under considerable pressure. Only a slight error by the Italian enabled Günther to pull a slight gap. That changed again on lap 18 when Giovinazzi successfully attacked the German in the hairpin and took third place.

Out in front, Felix Rosenqvist and Charles Leclerc were long gone by this time. For the Swede, it was his second win of the season while Leclerc, the best-placed rookie, scored his fourth podium finish of the year. Behind Giovinazzi and Maximilian Günther as the best-placed German, Callum Ilott (Carlin), Santino Ferrucci, Gustavo Menezes (Jagonya Ayam with Carlin), Alexander Albon (Signature), George Russell (Carlin) and Brandon Maïsano (Prema Powerteam) finished the race in fifth to tenth place respectively.

Felix Rosenqvist (Prema Powerteam): “For me, it was a perfect race. My start was good, my car was great and I also was able to manage the tyre degradation.”

Charles Leclerc (Van Amersfoort): “For me, it was a tough race. I couldn’t keep up with Felix, although I tried everything. On top of that, I always had to keep one eye on my rear-view mirror, because Antonio and Maximilian were quick. Generally, finishing second after a start from second on the grid is okay.”

Antonio Giovinazzi (Jagonya Ayam with Carlin): “Of course, I am very happy with my fifth podium finish in the fifth race, because I only started from fifth place on the grid. I managed to overtake Callum Ilott at an early stage already, but it took me a little bit longer before I finally could make a move to pass Maximilian.”

F1Weekly podcast # 676

Clark and Nasir go over the previous two Grand Prix’s and what could happen in Barcelona next weekend. We have another great episode of Tech Talk with Tim! Also want to share some news on the European F3 Championship…

Felix Rosenqvist claims the next pole positions

Season race: 5 and 6 of 33
Track: Hockenheim Grand Prix circuit
Pole position race 2: Felix Rosenqvist (Prema Powerteam)
Pole position race 3: Felix Rosenqvist (Prema Powerteam)
Weather: rain

Also in second qualifying of the FIA Formula 3 European Championship at the 4.574 kilometres long Hockenheimring Baden-Württemberg, nobody was faster than Felix Rosenqvist (Prema Powerteam). Both in the ranking of the fastest and the second-fastest lap times, the Swede claimed the top position and will thus start from pole position into the fifth and sixth race of the season. Charles Leclerc (Van Amersfoort Racing) and Maximilian Günther (kfzteile24 Mücke Motorsport) were second and third respectively in both rankings, with Callum Ilott (Carlin) and Lance Stroll (Prema Powerteam) each taking one fourth place.

Starting grid race 2
Felix Rosenqvist (1:49.630 minutes) already moved up to the top of the time sheets at the start of the session and hold on to this position until the end of qualifying. At times, the stalwart had an advantage of almost one second. Only just before the end, rookie driver Charles Leclerc (1:49.869 minutes) came within 0.239 seconds from the pace-setter. Maximilian Günther (1:50.423 minutes) reduced his gap to Rosenqvist in the closing stages and ended up as the best-placed German in third. On his final lap, Callum Ilott (1:50.510 minutes) moved up into fourth place and toppled Antonio Giovinazzi (Jagonya Ayam with Carlin, 1:50.773 minutes), who came to Hockenheim as the FIA Formula 3 European Championship points’ leader, to fifth place. Lance Stroll (1:50.847 minutes), Jake Dennis (Prema Powerteam, 1:51.144 minutes) and Alexander Albon (Signature, 1:51.171 minutes) followed in sixth to eighth place from Markus Pommer (Motopark, 1:51.362 minutes) and Santino Ferrucci (kfzteile24 Mücke Motorsport, 1:51.408 minutes).

Qualifying was briefly interrupted with five minutes remaining following a collision involving George Russell (Carlin, 1:52.540 minutes) and Matt Solomon (Double R Racing, 1:55.122 minutes). The Brit ended up 18th, his rival from Hong Kong was classified 30th.

Starting grid race 3
In the ranking of the second-fastest laps, the order in front also saw Felix Rosenqvist (1:50.396 minutes) ahead of Charles Leclerc (1:50.594 minutes) and Maximilian Günther (1:50.941 minutes). Lance Stroll (1:51.574 minutes) and Callum Ilott (1:51.637 minutes) ensured that four rookie drivers made it into the first five positions. Antonio Giovinazzi (1:51.712 minutes) ended up sixth from Mücke duo Mikkel Jensen (kfzteile24 Mücke Motorsport, 1:51.895 minutes) and Santino Ferrucci (1:51.936 minutes). Markus Pommer (1:52.180 minutes) and Gustavo Menezes (Jagonya Ayam with Carlin, 1:52.189 minutes) rounded out the top ten.

Felix Rosenqvist (Prema Powerteam): “At the beginning of the session, I was able to drive a few clear laps and I was quite confident. Then, unfortunately, the red flag got in our way. After that, we waited for a while, which turned out to be not ideal. Like that, I was unable to improve my fastest time, while my rival Charles Leclerc was quite quick in the end. Fortunately, my fastest lap time before the interruption was still good enough for pole position.

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WRC

ONE-TWO FINISH FOR THE DS 3 WRCS IN ARGENTINA!

155_PODIUM_ARGENTINA_2015

 

  • The Citroën Total Abu Dhabi World Rally Team claimed a one-two finish in Carlos Paz! This was Citroën Racing’s tenth win at Rally Argentina.
  • It was the team’s 29th one-two finish in the World Rally Championship and the first such result achieved by current driver line-up, Kris Meeke/Paul Nagle and Mads Østberg/Jonas Andersson.
  • Leaders from the second stage until the end, Kris Meeke and Paul Nagle celebrate their maiden WRC win. Mads Østberg and Jonas Andersson now lie second in the World Championship standings.

 

Citroën Racing really does love Rally Argentina. The French team has now won ten of its last eleven appearances in Carlos Paz. This victory, built from the outset by Kris Meeke, has been the perfect way to launch the DS brand in South America.

Having already set the joint fastest time in Wednesday’s shakedown, Kris Meeke and Paul Nagle only missed out on winning the first stage by 0.2 seconds. Having grabbed the lead after the treacherous SS2, the DS 3 WRC crew then controlled perfectly from the front on what is an incredibly difficult event.

Kris Meeke maintained his lead to the end to take his first ever win in the World Championship. In doing so, he claimed the first win by a British driver since Colin McRae prevailed at the 2002 Safari Rally. Kris becomes the 74th driver to win a World Championship race and the fourth most successful Briton, after the late Colin McRae (25 wins), Richard Burns (10) and Roger Clarke (1). Paul Nagle is only the second Irish co-driver to win a WRC round after Ronan McNamee in 1989. For Citroën Racing, this is their 94th WRC win and their 29th one-two finish, both of which are new records!

As in Mexico, Mads Østberg and Jonas Andersson collected a large haul of points as runners-up. After four rounds of the 2015 season, they now lie second in the World Championship standings, having also secured a bonus point in the Power Stage.

Thanks to the maximum points scored in this one-two finish, the Citroën Total Abu Dhabi World Rally Team now lies second in the Manufacturers’ standings.

Next up is Rally de Portugal on 21-24 May. This year, the base for the event – still held on gravel – moves to Matosinhos, to the north of Porto.

QUOTE, UNQUOTE

Yves Matton (Citroën Racing Team Principal): “This tenth win in Argentina goes way beyond the goals we had set. We haven’t had a one-two finish in the WRC since 2012 and our last win goes back to a little over a year ago. Argentina has been a happy hunting ground for Citroën Racing for years, in rallying and in track racing. Our strength has been the reliability of the DS 3 WRCs. This year’s Rally Argentina was exceptionally difficult and our drivers managed the race with a lot of intelligence.”

Kris Meeke: “Everything was fine until we got the end of the last stage. Once we had crossed the line, I was overcome with emotions. It’ll take time for it to really sink in. I didn’t start the rally aiming to fight for the win. I just wanted to have an error-free rally. The seven-week break really helped me. From the shakedown onwards, I felt full of confidence. It was a really difficult race but the DS 3 WRC is a solid and reliable car. All the other guys had problems and we secured a one-two finish. Mads had a fantastic rally as well. I have to thank Yves Matton, who believed in me. He gave me a great opportunity and he has been supportive throughout. This is just the first step in me thanking him for that support. I hope there will be others. This one is for Colin McRae.”

 

WTCC

FROM THE NÜRBURGRING TO THE HUNGARORING

FIA WORLD TOURING CAR CHAMPIONSHIP 2015 - MOROCCO - MARRAKECH WTCC-17/04/2015 TO 19/04/2015 - PHOTO : @tWorld <pJust a few days after their triumphant weekend in Marrakech, the Citroën C-Elysée WTCCs are returning to action in an entirely different setting!
– On Tuesday, the drivers will be hard at work on the Nürburgring Nordschleife track, in a test day to prepare them for the German round of the FIA WTCC on 14-16 May.
– The Citroën Total team will then head to the Hungaroring to contest the third meeting of the season.
– The four official Citroën drivers are currently sitting atop the World Drivers’ Championship, with José María López leading the way, ahead of Sébastien Loeb, Yvan Muller and Ma Qing Hua.

After a long interlude to give them time to transport all their gear across the Atlantic from Argentina to Morocco, the FIA World Touring Car Championship teams are about to embark upon a three-month tour of Europe, with trips to Hungary, Germany, Russia, Slovakia, France and Portugal following in quick succession, offering the competitors little respite until mid-July.

On their way from Versailles to Budapest, the Citroën Racing team will make a quick detour to the Eifel mountains to take part in a day of collective testing at the Nürburgring. Next Tuesday, all the WTCC drivers will be doing their best to get to grips with the ‘Gesamstrecke’, a circuit that includes all but a few chicanes of F1’s legendary Nordschleife. They will negotiate 170 ‘official’ turns on a 25.947 km track… all in a little under 9 minutes.

For Citroën Racing’s engineers, it will be a particularly important day. “More than anything, it’s a meeting that has required a lot of preparation from the drivers,” explains Xavier Mestelan, Citroën Racing’s Technical Director. “A few months ago, they went and did a few laps of the Nordschleife in mass-produced cars. They then carried on the process of memorising the track on our simulator. Now, we’re going to be able to put all that into practice. It’s hard to sum up a circuit like that in just a few words, but we already know that we’ll have to have our cars sitting rather higher than usual because of the bumpy surface. It’s not a rally, but we’ll have to complet ely review our setup in terms of suspension and aerodynamics. The circuit also poses a major challenge for the engine, with one long straight which requires the cars to maintain top speed for almost 40 seconds.”

Unlike at traditional test sessions, where each day a new driver takes his turn in a car dedicated to development, Sébastien Loeb, José María López, Ma Qing Hua and Yvan Muller will be using the same Citroën C-Elysée WTCCs they race in. The technical team will therefore be able to compare the data acquired to work towards the best possible setup. “The length of the circuit will force us to change our approach,” Xavier Mestelan continues. “On a 26 km track, we obviously won’t be able to work bend-by-bend as we normally do. We’ll have to divide the circuit into sections and find the best compromises we can. The cars will have to be easy to drive, but also precise in their hand ling due to the various hidden turns.

GP3

Varhaug fastest on day two in Barcelona

Jenzer Motorsport’s Pal Varhaug tops both sessions in Spain

Norwegian Pal Varhaug clocked the fastest time in both the morning and afternoon session at the Circuit De Catalunya, Barcelona. His best time of 1:34.867 was set in the morning.

Sunshine greeted the GP3 Series paddock for the second and final day of pre-season testing. It was a busy start to the morning with all 24 drivers eager to make the most of the conditions. Varhaug led the way early on just 0.011’s faster than Campos Racing’s Alex Palou with Jenzer Motorsport’s Matheo Tuscher and Esteban Ocon (ART Grand Prix) rounding out the top four.
After one hour, the Norwegian driver improved on his personal best to dip into the 1m34’s with Ocon moving up to P2. There was a short break in proceedings when Ashkanani stopped between turns 6-7 and unfortunately again later in the session at Turn 14.
Whilst some teams concentrated on pit-stop practice, Ghiotto shot to P2, two tenths off the Jenzer Motorsport driver’s fastest lap.  The positions at the top remain unchanged and at the chequered flag Varhaug remained in control of the timesheet. Ghiotto, Ocon, Tuscher, Jann Mardenborough, Ralph Boschung, Palou, Marvin Kirchhöfer, Emil Bernstorff and Seb Morris completed the top ten.
Boschung led the start of the afternoon session until Varhaug bettered his time. At the midway point, the Arden International duo of Kevin Ceccon and Emil Bernstorff jumped up to second and third displacing the Swiss rookie. The focus for most teams was long runs with the opening round fast approaching.
As the clock ticked down, nobody was able to improve so for Varhaug ended the day with P1 for both sessions. Behind the Jenzer Motorsport driver at the chequered flag were Ceccon, Bernstorff, Kirchhöfer, Boschung, Adderly Fong, Palou, Ocon, Matthew Parry and Aleksander Bosak.
This marks the end of testing and the GP3 Series will be back at the Circuit de Catalunya, Barcelona in two weeks’ time for the opening round of the 2015 season on 08-10 May.

GP3

Mardenborough quickest on day one

Carlin’s Jann Mardenborough fastest at Barcelona pre-season test

Brit Jann Mardenborough was in excellent form on the opening day of testing clocking the fastest time of the day and finishing P2 in the afternoon session. His best laptime of 1:34.910 remained unbeaten. Seb Morris (Status Grand Prix) topped the afternoon session.

The final pre-season test of the season got underway under grey skies with the 24 drivers setting their installation laps around the Circuit de Catalunya. It was a very quiet morning with no competitive times set until over half of the session had run.
Mardenborough was the early pace setter and first to dip into the 1m34’s, three tenths faster than teammate Antonio Fuoco. Jenzer Motorsport’s Pal Varhaug and Ralph Boschung shot to second and third before a red flag halted proceedings when Samin Gomez testing for Campos Racing stopped at the exit of Turn 5.
Once the action resumed, ART Grand Prix’s Marvin Kirchhöfer and Koiranen GP’s Jimmy Eriksson jumped up the order to P3 and P4 respectively but nobody was able to improve on the best time set by Mardenborough at the chequered flag. Varhaug, Kirchhöfer, Boschung, Eriksson, Esteban Ocon, Fuoco, Alfonso Celis. Jr, Oscar Tunjo, Adderly Fong completed the top ten.
Following the two hour break, Morris was first to top the timings with Campos Racing’s Alex Palou in second. Early on in the session light rain fell, bringing all the drivers back into their garages as they waited for the rain to stop. As the sunshine fought to appear through the thick clouds, drivers returned to track action with times around four seconds off the pace.
In the final forty-five minutes, Mardenborough moved up to P2, one tenth off Morris as the circuit began to dry enough for times to marginally improve. Matthew Parry also found some extra pace to rise to third as the clock ticked down.
Fuoco stopped at turn three in the final minutes which brought out the red flag leaving just one minute remaining. At the chequered flag, Morris remained head of the pack as he had done for the whole afternoon session ahead of Mardenborough, Parry, Palou, Alex Fontana, Sandy Stuvik, Emil Bernstorff, Fuoco, Celis. Jr and Matheo Tuscher.

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