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)
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.”