FIA Formula 3 European Championship, round 9, race 3, Vallelunga (I)

Macau Grand Prix


FIA Formula 3 European Championship, round 9, race 3, Vallelunga (I)

RAFFAELE MARCIELLO TAKES POLE POSITION IN MACAU—

Raffaele: “I still gave myself a safety margin as the one thing I didn’t want to do was to hit the guardrail. My team and I did a great job and being familiar with this circuit I know overall where the limits are. I put in a good lap. I took advantage of slipstreaming at the right time. Even so it’s not going to be an easy race as in addition to the usual Macau traps, the long straight isn’t favourable to the pole sitter especially at the start. You have to have a good race on Saturday, but it’s on Sunday that it’s really important to finish first. Before, it doesn’t really mean much.” 

Heikki Kovalainen, Race Driver, Lotus F1 Team

Formula 1


Heikki Kovalainen, Race Driver, Lotus F1 Team

 

HEIKKI KOVALAINEN TO DRIVE FOR LOTUS F1 TEAM—

Finnish driver Heikki Kovalainen [32] will join Lotus F1 Team for the final two races of the 2013 season as a stand-in for regular race driver Kimi Räikkönen, who is currently undergoing back surgery. 

Heikki – a veteran of 109 Grand Prix starts – has previously driven for Renault F1 Team, McLaren, and Caterham F1 Team. Over the course of his six seasons in Formula 1 to date, Heikki has scored 105 World Championship points. He has qualified on the front row five times, taken one pole position at the 2008 British Grand Prix, achieved two fastest laps and finished on the podium four times; including victory at the 2008 Hungarian Grand Prix. 

Prior to racing for Lotus F1 Team in its former guise of Renault F1 Team in 2007, Heikki performed various test duties for the squad between 2004 – 2006. He completed his seat fitting at Enstone on Wednesday 13th November, before proceeding directly to Austin to join up with the race team.

Eric Boullier, Team Principal, Lotus F1 Team

“Obviously we had to move quickly following the news of Kimi’s non-participation in the final two races of this season, and we found ourselves facing a difficult decision in terms of who should take the wheel in Austin and São Paulo. On the one hand we had our reserve driver Davide Valsecchi – who is a talented young driver that has shown a great deal of promise – and on the other we had the opportunity to bring in a seasoned Formula 1 competitor in Heikki. Whilst we have every faith in Davide’s abilities, we are obviously involved in a tight Constructors’ Championship battle, so it was decided that the experience Heikki could bring to the team would be invaluable as we aim to finish the year in the best position possible. We must thank Tony Fernandes and Caterham F1 Team for their professional conduct in allowing Heikki to join us for the final races of this season.” 

Heikki Kovalainen, Race Driver, Lotus F1 Team

“It is a fantastic opportunity for me to join Lotus F1 Team for the final two races of 2013. We’ve seen this year that the E21 is a car which can win races and finish on the podium, so I will be pushing hard for the best results possible. Jumping into a car so late in the year when you have not been competing in the races all season will be a challenge, but I know the team at Enstone well so I have no concerns about getting up to speed. This is a great opportunity for me, so I would like to thank Tony Fernandes and Caterham F1 Team for allowing me to take advantage of it.”

Renault returns to F3

Renault Sport


Renault returns to F3

RENAULT AND ORECA TO RETURN TO FORMULA 3—

Following a 10-year absence, Renault is set to make its return to the Formula 3 grid. The result of the partnership between Renault Sport Technologies and Oreca, the Renault will be used by several teams in the 2014 FIA Formula 3 European Championship. In making this commitment, in conjunction with the World Series by Renault, Renault Sport Technologies has further strengthened its Formula One driver development programme.

Those who remember Alain Prost’s rise to the top of the motorsport ladder will also recall the trio formed by Renault, Oreca and Formula 3. After making his breakthrough in Formula Renault, the Frenchman won the 1979 national and European F3 championships at the wheel of a car powered by Renault and prepared by Oreca, a dual triumph that paved the way for Prost’s step up to Formula One and greatness.

Renault Sport was a regular presence in F3 before bowing out in 2003. Its return next year marks the start of an exciting new era that will also see the FIA’s Formula 3 European Championship receive a revamp.

In its bid to ensure the successful design and development of a new engine, Renault Sport Technologies have entered into a partnership with French motorsport giants Oreca, who have worked closely with Renault on many occasions in the past. In line with all powerplants in the category, the Renault by Oreca will be a 2L, naturally aspirated, 4-cylinder engine with direct injection.

“Formula 3 occupies a special place in the history of single-seater racing. Inspired by the Fédération Internationale de l’Automobile, its renewal was all the persuasion we needed to make our return,” said Renault Sport Technologies Motorsport Director Arnaud Boulanger. “The partnership with Oreca recalls past glories, although we are both looking firmly to the future and share the same big ambitions. With Formula Renault 1.6, Formula Renault 2.0 and Formula Renault 3.5, we already have in place an effective pyramid system leading to Formula One. Our involvement in F3 will allow us to add an intermediate step. Over these last few years we have seen a lot of young drivers such as Jules Bianchi, Daniel Ricciardo and Jean-Eric Vergne enjoy the benefits of F3 and increase their technical expertise after Formula Renault 2.0 and before moving on all the stronger for it to Formula Renault 3.5 Series.”

“Formula 3 was a great era for Oreca and it’s fantastic for us to be back in the championship, which is being restored to its rightful place in motorsport,” said Oreca CEO Hugues de Chaunac. “We scored a number of wins with Renault and we are getting ready to embark on a new challenge together, one we hope will end in success. That is what we are aiming for at least, though we know we’ll be facing some very stiff opposition. This is a major project for our engine department and consolidates its standing on the European scene. We share the same desire for succeed and to innovate, and it is very important to us to be a significant link in a development programme that offers a route into F1.”

fiaf3-2013-03-24-0046

F3 European Championship


fiaf3-2013-03-24-0046

60 YEARS OF THE MACAU GRAND PRIX—

The prestigious Macau GP is going to celebrate its 60th anniversary, this year. The former Portuguese colony’s 6.12-kilometre street circuit is the venue of the ’FIA Intercontinental Cup’, representing the unofficial world finale of the Formula 3 season. Consequently, it goes without saying that the grid of the tradition-rich race also will feature a big number of FIA Formula 3 European Championship drivers: altogether, eight teams and 18 drivers will fly the FIA Formula 3 European Championship flag, in Macau. With reigning European Champion Raffaele Marciello (Prema Powerteam) and vice-champion Felix Rosenqvist (GR Asia with Mücke), the planet’s most competitive young-gun series will be represented – inter alia – by two of the hottest favourites. Motors TV will cover the anniversary edition re-live: Saturdays’ qualifying race will be broadcasted on Sunday, 17 November from 15.30hrs CET before the race itself (16.10hrs CET).

Felix Rosenqvist travels to China’s gamblers’ paradise with big ambitions. The Swede who turned 22 a week before the Macau GP finished second behind Portugal’s António Félix da Costa in last year’s edition and wants revenge. Alex Lynn (Theodore Racing by Prema), who finished third in 2012, also looks forward to returning to Macau. The Briton who also came third in the 2013 FIA Formula 3 European Championship, and Lucas Auer (Theodore Racing by Prema) who secured fourth position in the championship, will be the drivers behind the two single-seaters that mark the comeback of the name Theodore onto the Formula 3 stage. 

Apart from Rosenqvist and Lynn, another three 2013 FIA Formula 3 European Championship drivers made it to the top 10, in the 2012 Macau GP: Luis Felipe Derani (Fortec Motorsport, sixth) Raffaele Marciello (eighth) and Harry Tincknell (Carlin, ninth). And all the three drivers are going to once again meet the challenge represented by the narrow streets of Macau.

More than 50 percent of the 29-driver Macau grid contested the 2013 FIA Formula 3 European Championship. 18 drivers racing for eight different teams will honour the event with their presence. In addition to the one for Tincknell, British Team Carlin will enter another two single-seaters for Jordan King und Nicholas Latifi. One of the two kfzteile24 Mücke Motorsport vehicles will be raced by Dennis van de Laar. Fortec Motorsports will be represented – inter alia – by John Bryant-Meisner, William Buller and Tom Blomqvist. Alexander Sims is going to contest the event for ThreeBond with T Sport and the Double R Racing squad will make a two-car appearance with Sean Gelael and Antonio Giovinazzi. One of the two Galaxy – Double R Racing cars will be driven by Estonia’s Kevin Korjus who contested the FIA Formula 3 European Championship season finale at Hockenheim for ThreeBond with T-Sport. Eurointernational signed Monaco’s Stefano Coletti – who also raced at the Hockenheimring Baden-Württemberg – for the Macau GP and Lucas Wolf will be the only German young gun on the Macau grid. He contests the 15-lap race for his squad URD Rennsport.

Felix Rosenqvist (GR Asia with Mücke): “I think that Macau’s circuit is the most difficult one of the world. Here, a lot of courage and perfect precision are a must if you want to be fast. A lot of really good drivers are going to race and nonetheless, I’m travelling to Macau with just one goal: to win the race!” 

Formula 3 Macau Grand Prix*

Thursday, 14 November 2013
10.55-11.40hrs Practice
14.40-15.10hrs Qualifying

Friday, 15 November 2013
11.00-11.45hrs Practice
14.45-15.15hrs Qualifying

Saturday, 16 November 2013
14.00-14.50hrs Qualification Race – 10 laps

Sunday, 17 November 2013
15.30-16.30hrs Race – 15 laps

* All times are local times (UTC+8).

nasir and younger Magnussen

Formula 1


Nasir Hameed and younger Magnussen
Nasir Hameed and younger Magnussen

MAGNUSSEN REPLACES PEREZ FOR 2014—

Magnussen will replace Sergio Perez at McLaren in 2014.

The initial report was done by Autosport’s Jonathan Noble on Sunday, suggesting the 21-year-old Dane had emerged as favorite after team meetings post-the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix. McLaren team boss called Perez’s efforts in Abu Dhabi, “disappointing.”

Then on Monday, BBC reporter Andrew Bensoncited sources who said a contract isn’t signed, but the team has chosen Magnussen as the replacement. Veteran journalist Joe Saward also said in his blog McLaren has opted not to take its option up on Perez.

Magnussen has won this year’s World Series by Renault championship and impressed in two F1 tests.

Statistically speaking Perez hasn’t performed as well as teammate Jenson Button, but neither has been able to make much out of this year’s difficult chassis. Less than a week ago, though, reports were beginning to emerge that Perez’s seat was in doubt.

Williams Massa

Formula 1


Williams Massa

MALDONADO OUT MASSA IN—

The Williams F1 Team is delighted to announce that Felipe Massa will join the team to drive alongside Valtteri Bottas for the 2014 FIA Formula One World Championship season. The new line-up reflects Williams’ determination to bring success back to the team.

Having competed in 12 FIA Formula One World Championship seasons, Felipe is an experienced talent and proven race winner, with 11 race wins and 36 podiums to his credit during a hugely successful career. He has frequently challenged for the Drivers’ Championship, missing out by the narrowest of margins in 2008 and has also contributed to Ferrari’s Constructors’ Championships in both 2007 and 2008.

After joining Williams as the team’s Test Driver in 2010, Valtteri was promoted to a race seat in 2013 and has matured into an accomplished Formula One driver, impressing the team not least with his handling of the difficult conditions in Canada to put his Williams-Renault FW35 third on the grid.

The Williams F1 Team would like to take this opportunity to thank Pastor Maldonado for his efforts and contribution over the past three seasons, in particular delivering the team’s Spanish Grand Prix victory last year. We wish him well for the future.

Sir Frank Williams, Founder and Team Principal: “We are delighted to be able to confirm our 2014 driver line-up and welcome Felipe into the Williams family. He is an exceptional talent and a real fighter on the race track; he also brings a wealth of experience as we begin a new chapter in our story. Valtteri is a valued member of the team and I’m pleased he was able to demonstrate his talent in tricky conditions in Montréal. There is much more to come from him.”

Claire Williams, Deputy Team Principal: “It is very exciting for us to be able to confirm our 2014 driver line-up as part of a number of announcements we will be making over the coming weeks. Felipe has demonstrated his talent and speed over the years, as well as his ability to help motivate and drive a team to championship success, and we are extremely pleased that he will be joining us as we embark on our 2014 campaign. Valtteri is an exciting, young talent who has done a solid job for us in his rookie season and we are looking forward to giving him the equipment he deserves to show just how good he is.

“This announcement is a key step towards our goal of returning Williams to the front of the grid, and part of our on-going plans to ensure we are stronger in 2014 and beyond. The stability of having both our drivers on multi-year contracts, Mercedes-Benz as our engine partner and a strong commercial base all contribute to the future success of the Williams F1 Team.”

Felipe Massa: “Williams is one of the most successful and important teams of all time in Formula One. When I was a kid, I always dreamed about racing for Williams, Ferrari or McLaren and I’m glad to be signing with another icon of the sport following my time at Ferrari. It is also nice to remember that some of the best Brazilian drivers raced for Williams and cemented a strong national link with the team. With such a major change of regulations in 2014, I hope my experience will be useful in helping the team in its effort to move on from a difficult period. Since my early days in motor racing, I don’t remember seeing so many new rules in a single season and I’m fully prepared to work with everyone at Grove to make sure we find the right direction.  I’m highly motivated to start working hard from the very beginning in what is an exciting new challenge in my career.”

Valtteri Bottas: “I’m very happy to be staying with the team as I embark on my second season in Formula One. I have known everyone here for many years, firstly as a test driver and now as a race driver, so it feels like home. I have faith in Williams and I know we can do so much better in the future than our current performance shows. I am looking forward to having Felipe as my teammate. He is a quick and experienced driver and together we will be pushing to the maximum to improve the car and get as many points as we can next season. We will be working throughout the winter to ensure we are ready for the challenge of 2014. I would also like to thank everyone at Williams, especially Frank, Claire and the senior management for their on-going trust in me.”

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