F3 European Championship

FIA Formula 3 European Championship, round 9, race 1, Vallelunga (I)

Raffaele Marciello re-increases the gap—

Raffaele Marciello (Prema Powerteam) made perfect use of his home-track advantage by winning the 25 race of the 2013 FIA Formula 3 European Championship season at the 4.085-kilometre Autodromo Piero Taruffi. Alexander Sims (ThreeBond with T-Sport) and Alex Lynn (Prema Powerteam) joined the Ferrari Driver Academy protégé on the podium. As the effort of Sweden’s Felix Rosenqvist (kfzteile24 Mücke Motorsport) to battle his way back up ended in 10th position, Italian Marciello could extend his lead in the overall standings to 32.5 points. 

From his pole position, Raffaele Marciello defended his lead and kept the gap on second-place Alexander Sims between 0.8 and 1.2 seconds throughout the race. Similarly easy was the race for Alex Sims and Alex Lynn who finished second and third respectively. Red Bull junior Daniil Kvyat (Carlin) came fourth, followed by Eddie Cheever (Prema Powerteam), who benefited from the retirement of Félix Serrallés (Fortec Motorsports). Behind Roman Cheever, who lives just half an hour from the circuit, Luis Felipe Derani (Fortec Motorsports) had to defend his sixth position against Lucas Auer (Prema Powerteam) while Sven Müller (Van Amersfoort Racing) hoped for a mistake of the pairing driving ahead of him. Italian Antonio Giovinazzi (Double R Racing) finished ninth in his home race, with Felix Rosenqvist who impressed with remarkable fighting spirit and gained a lot of ground securing 10th place. Particularly in the first half of the race he passed driver by driver and battled his way up from 27th position on the grid to finish 10th. 

Raffaele Marciello (Prema Powerteam) 
“It goes without saying that I’m happy about this win but it isn’t more important than any other win in this season. It definitely was a difficult race as Alex was pushing hard. During the small battle with Alex in the opening stages I didn’t think about the fight for the title. But I didn’t take too many risks and had he been much faster I’d have to let him go. For me, it was of major importance to finish ahead of Felix and I succeeded in doing so.” 

Alexander Sims (ThreeBond with T-Sport)
“I pressurised Raffaele a lot and gave my very best to force him into a mistake. But unfortunately, he didn’t do me this favour. So, I had no chance of passing him although my pace was as good as the one of Raffaele. I think we made a good team effort, here.”

Alex Lynn (Prema Powerteam)
“I think my race wasn’t too bad. We realised as early as in the qualifying sessions that my pace was really good and by securing a podium, I successfully made use of this pace. I added important points for the battle for third championship position to my tally and also reduced the gap to the second-placed driver, Felix Rosenqvist.”

Formula 1

Webber Pole Japan

“It’s a great track and we always enjoy driving here. The laps weren’t too bad today to be honest, but you always want a little bit more here and there. Sebastian had a problem in qualifying, so it’s a little bit of a hollow pole position if you like; he still did a phenomenal lap. But, I’m happy to be on pole; you have to grab the opportunities when you can and still get the laps in. It’s a very, very nice farewell for me to have pole position on my last attempt here at Suzuka. It’s a great circuit and I’ll never forget the first sector today, it’s what us guys strive for and it’s what our profession is all about; driving that is a real highlight for us.”
CHRISTIAN HORNER: “It’s great to have secured front row for tomorrow’s race. It was a very strong performance by Mark today to claim his first pole of the year and Sebastian, despite the failure of KERS on his car, produced a great lap also to get onto the front row for tomorrow’s race. We need to understand the issue with his car, as it’s the second session we had a KERS problem. Hopefully we can convert these very strong grid positions into a good points haul tomorrow.”
(Renault) THIERRY SALVI: “Seb had a KERS issue in qualifying, which he had to try and manage throughout the lap. I let you imagine the job he had to do during those timed laps, but at the end he did not have the benefit of any KERS boost. It was a brilliant effort by both drivers to lock out the front row. It takes the Renault total to 209 poles and a new record for engine manufacturers – something we can be very proud of. But equally important is the advantage it gives us for tomorrow.”
Pos Driver                Team                 Time            Gap    
 1. Mark Webber           Red Bull-Renault     1m30.915s                  
 2. Sebastian Vettel      Red Bull-Renault     1m31.089s  +0.174s         
 3. Lewis Hamilton        Mercedes             1m31.253s  +0.338s         
 4. Romain Grosjean       Lotus-Renault        1m31.365s  +0.450s         
 5. Felipe Massa          Ferrari              1m31.378s  +0.463s         
 6. Nico Rosberg          Mercedes             1m31.397s  +0.482s         
 7. Nico Hulkenberg       Sauber-Ferrari       1m31.644s  +0.729s         
 8. Fernando Alonso       Ferrari              1m31.665s  +0.750s         
 9. Kimi Raikkonen        Lotus-Renault        1m31.684s  +0.769s         
10. Jenson Button         McLaren-Mercedes     1m31.827s  +0.912s         
Q2 cut-off time: 1m31.848s                                   Gap **       
11. Sergio Perez          McLaren-Mercedes     1m31.989s  +0.699s         
12. Paul di Resta         Force India-Mercedes 1m31.992s  +0.702s         
13. Valtteri Bottas       Williams-Renault     1m32.013s  +0.723s         
14. Esteban Gutierrez     Sauber-Ferrari       1m32.063s  +0.773s         
15. Pastor Maldonado      Williams-Renault     1m32.093s  +0.803s         
16. Daniel Ricciardo      Toro Rosso-Ferrari   1m32.485s  +1.195s         
Q1 cut-off time: 1m32.875s                                    Gap *
17. Adrian Sutil          Force India-Mercedes 1m32.890s  +1.066s         
18. Jean-Eric Vergne      Toro Rosso-Ferrari   1m33.357s  +1.533s         
19. Max Chilton           Marussia-Cosworth    1m34.320s  +2.496s         
20. Charles Pic           Caterham-Renault     1m34.556s  +2.732s         
21. Giedo van der Garde   Caterham-Renault     1m34.879s  +3.055s         
22. Jules Bianchi         Marussia-Cosworth    1m34.958s  +3.134s