Alex Lynn and Emil Bernstorff claim the top spots at the Red Bull Ring

Celebration time for Carlin: Alex Lynn converted his second consecutive pole of his career into a strong lights to flag victory in Austria, with teammate Emil Bernstorff closely following him home to record his maiden GP3 podium. Koiranen GP’s Jimmy Eriksson took the final spot on the rostrum in third.

 The atmosphere on the grid was electric with very passionate fans at the Red Bull Ring making themselves heard and as the lights went out it was pole sitter Lynn who made a good getaway to hold position. Behind him however, there was a first corner incident involving Alex Fontana (ART Grand Prix) and the Marussia Manor Racing pair of Dean Stoneman and Patrick Kujala. The Finn was able to continue as the trio made light contact but it was a premature end to the race for Fontana and Stoneman. Arden International’s Robert Visoiu also retired on the opening lap.
Bernstorff made a blazing start to move into P2 behind his teammate Lynn. The safety car was deployed following the incident on lap one and once action resumed Richie Stanaway (Status Grand Prix) was in a hurry to move up the order, passing Eriksson, but the Swede fought back as the two tussled with the Koiranen GP driver making his move to reclaim P3.
Lynn pulled out almost a one second margin over Bernstorff with a further gap of almost four seconds back to their nearest rivals. Alfonso Celis. Jr (Status Grand Prix) made contact with the rear of Adderly Fong’s Jenzer Motorsport car and the duo both retired.
The Carlin pair traded fastest laps for a number of laps but it was Series leader Lynn who got the edge and achieved the quickest lap of the race to pocket a further two points for his efforts. Lynn increased his advantage to over three seconds as the race went on.
Hilmer Motorsport rookie Riccardo Agostini who had a produced a promising qualifying and was running in the top ten retired at the midway point of the race. Marvin Kirchhöfer had his claws into Stanaway but the Kiwi resisted his moves to hold onto fourth, a few seconds behind Eriksson. Nick Yelloly also had his mirrors full with Luis Sa Silva with the Brit getting the better of his former teammate.
After 18 laps the chequered flag was waved and it was Lynn and Bernstorff first across the line much to the joy of their British squad. Eriksson, Stanaway, Kirchhöfer, Mathéo Tuscher (Jenzer Motorsport) and Yelloly completed the top seven. Sa Silva scored his first GP3 point and will start from reverse pole in Race 2. Kujala finished ninth, ahead of Patric Niederhauser who defended with all his might from his Arden International teammate Jann Mardenborough in the closing laps.
Lynn increases his advantage in the Drivers’ Standings, the Brit is now on 62 points with Eriksson in second on 37. Stanaway (35), Kirchhöfer (26) and Mathéo Tuscher (24) complete the top five. After all three Carlin drivers have scored points in Race 1, they sit pretty at the top of the Teams’ Standings on 85, with Status Grand Prix (45), ART Grand Prix (44), Koiranen GP (37) and Marussia Manor Racing (35) rounding out the top five.
Catch Race 2 tomorrow morning at 09.25 local time when the fight for supremacy continues!
Spielberg – Race 1
Alex Lynn
Emil Bernstorff
Jimmy Eriksson
Koiranen GP
Richie Stanaway
Status Grand Prix
Marvin Kirchhöfer
ART Grand Prix
Mathéo Tuscher
Jenzer Motorsport
Nick Yelloly
Status Grand Prix
Luis Sa Silva
Patrick Kujala
Marussia Manor Racing
Patric Niederhauser
Arden International
Jann Mardenborough
Arden International
Roman De Beer
Pal Varhaug
Jenzer Motorsport
Nelson Mason
Hilmer Motorsport
Dino Zamparelli
ART Grand Prix
Santiago Urrutia
Koiranen GP
Ryan Cullen
Marussia Manor Racing
Victor Carbone
Nikolay Martsenko
Hilmer Motorsport
Carmen Jorda
Koiranen GP
Not Classified
Riccardo Agostini
Hilmer Motorsport
Adderly Fong
Jenzer Motorsport
Alfonso Celis. Jr
Dean Stoneman
Status Grand Prix
Marussia Manor Racing
Robert Visoiu
Arden International
Fastest Lap : Alex Lynn– Carlin : 1 :21. 557 on lap 17

Formula 1


(Reuters) – Brazilian Felipe Massa seized his first Formula One pole position since 2008 as a resurgent Williams swept the front row of the starting grid on Saturday in qualifying for the Austrian Grand Prix.

Finnish team mate Valtteri Bottas took second place for the Mercedes-powered former world champions with championship leader Nico Rosberg third fastest for Mercedes.

Austria quali podium 2014

It was the first time this season that dominant Mercedes had not taken pole and the race will see Williams’ first start from the front of the grid since Venezuelan Pastor Maldonado in Spain in 2012.

“Williams are back to the top, they are back to fight. I am pleased for me and the team as well,” declared an emotional Massa whose last pole was with Ferrari at his home grand prix before finishing that season as runner-up.

“After a long time I hope this is just the beginning of great possibilities. I hope to be in this position again,” added the Brazilian who suffered near-fatal head injuries in a freak accident in Hungary in 2009.

Britain’s Lewis Hamilton, Rosberg’s team mate and closest championship rival who is 22 points behind the German after seven races, had a nightmare session.

The 2008 world champion will start ninth after his first flying lap of the revamped Red Bull Ring was disallowed because he exceeded track limits and he then spun on his final attempt.

Red Bull’s quadruple world champion Sebastian Vettel fared even worse, qualifying 13th at what counts as a home circuit for the team.

“I’m not happy, let’s put it that way,” said the German. “I think anything is possible tomorrow but surely we are not as quick as we’d like to be.”

Australian team mate Daniel Ricciardo, winner of the previous race in Canada, qualified ahead of Vettel yet again and will start fifth, behind Ferrari’s Fernando Alonso.

The last time two Williams drivers lined up together on the front row was in Germany 11 years ago – the year Austria was last on the calendar.

“I am so happy with what has happened today, with us, our team, it was such a great moment. It is a long time since I last had a pole position,” Massa told reporters.

Bottas also celebrated his best ever qualifying performance.

“It’s a great result for the team. We’ve made progress throughout the year and now we get this result. The hard work is all paying off,” said the Finn.

“It will be a different story tomorrow I think. We have a big, big job to keep the Mercedes cars behind us – and some of the other cars – Ferrari and Red Bull – can do well also.”

(Writing by Alan Baldwin, editing by Tony Jimenez)


Max Verstappen wins his home race

 Season round: 13 of 33

Track: Spa-Francorchamps
Winner: Max Verstappen (Van Amersfoort Racing)
Pole position: Esteban Ocon (Prema Powerteam)
Weather: sunny

Max Verstappen (Van Amersfoort Racing), the son of ex-Formula 1 driver Jos Verstappen, scored his second season in the FIA Formula 3 European Championship at the 7.004 kilometres long Formula 1 circuit of Spa-Francorchamps. The 16-year-old Dutchman with residence in Belgium won the 13th season round from Lucas Auer (kfzteile24 Mücke Motorsport), the nephew of ex-Formula 1 driver Gerhard Berger. Jake Dennis (Carlin) claimed third place. Esteban Ocon (Prema Powerteam) remains in the lead of the drivers’ standings. The French Lotus F1 junior driver retired following a collision with Antonio Fuoco (Prema Powerteam) on the opening lap.

FIA Formula 3 European Championship, round 5, race 1, Spa-Francorchamps (BEL)

Max Verstappen already moved up into the lead at an early stage and didn’t lose his position after a safety car intervention. The safety car was deployed on lap six after 16-year-old Santino Ferrucci (Eurointernational), who is making his series debut this weekend, and Italian Antinio Giovinazzi (Jagonya Ayam with Carlin) had collided and retired. Verstappen’s victory was only briefly in jeopardy on the final lap when Lucas Auer started an attack. Verstappen turned this off successfully and took the chequered flag ahead of his opponent from Austria.

British rookie driver Jake Dennis crossed the finish line in third place. The Carlin driver overtook Felix Rosenqvist (kfzteile24 Mücke Motorsport) for third on the final lap and got to climb on the podium for the prize-giving ceremony as a reward. The Swede dropped back as far as seventh due to a broken fuel pump. Tom Blomqvist (Jagonya Ayam with Carlin) claimed fourth place from Antonio Fuoco and Gustavo Menezes (Van Amersfoort Racing), who scored his best result of the season in sixth place. Felipe Guimarães (Double R Racing) was classified eighth behind Rosenqvist and also scored his best result in the FIA Formula 3 European Championship to date. Jules Szymkowiak (Van Amersfoort Racing) and Jordan King (Carlin) rounded out the top ten after an action-packed race.

Max Verstappen (Van Amersfoort Racing): “My start was okay and I was third into Eau Rouge. On the long straights, I then had such a good slipstream that I was able to go into the lead. Until the safety car, everything went fine, but my car started to oversteer in the closing stages. The two final laps were really tough, but eventually, I managed to bring first place home and I am really happy.”

Lucas Auer (kfzteile24 Mücke Motorsport): “My start wasn’t particularly good, but at least I had a good slipstream after that. In the next laps, I was able to follow Max, but I couldn’t attack him. That changed only on the final lap: I made a move on him, but it wasn’t enough. Nevertheless, it was a nice battle for victory with Max.”

Jake Dennis (Carlin): “Moving up from eighth on the grid to finish third doesn’t happen every day. At Spa, however, this is possible. My start was already good, but I also benefited from the collision between Esteban Ocon and Antonio Fuoco. Thus, I was fourth after one lap already. After that, I was able to pull away from the driver in fifth place until the safety car came out. Eventually, Felix Rosenqvist had problems. I took the opportunity and took over his third place. Third place is a good result.”