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F3 European Championship

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


The protagonists Raffaele Marciello (Prema Powerteam) and Felix Rosenqvist (kfzteile24 Mücke Motorsport) have taken the battle for the FIA Formula 3 European Championship title down to the season finale at the 4.547 kilometre Hockenheimring Baden-Württemberg. Nonetheless, Marciello who travels to Hockenheim with a 45.5-pointlead over Rosenqvist is the favourite in this battle. On the other hand, the Italian Ferrari Driver Academy protégé can’t feel safe as his Swedish opponent is far from giving up early. The prize for the title winner is impressive: In addition to the title and the trophy, the champion also will win a day of testing at the wheel of a Scuderia Ferrari Formula 1 racer. 

The two title contenders experienced an eventful season, with Marciello holding the lead right from the start but Rosenqvist following close behind for the major part of the year. The Italian born in Zurich travels to Hockenheim with boosted confidence as he extended his championship lead last weekend by winning two races at his home circuit at Vallelunga, Italy. Rosenqvist, on the other hand, is motivated by the fact that he always has been securing good results at Hockenheim and has got – just as his rival – what it takes to secure race wins at any time. 

In addition to the battle for the title, the fight for third position in the championship also isn’t over yet. Here, the rivals are the team-mates Alex Lynn and Lucas Auer (both Prema Powerteam). Prior to the final three races of the season, Briton Lynn holds a comfortable 58.5-pointlead over Austrian Auer, with the maximum of points to be scored amounting to 75. 

At the Hockenheimring Baden-Württemberg, the FIA Formula 3 European Championship regulars will be joined by two young guns who also want to compete with the best Formula 3 drivers of the world. Nick Cassidy replaces Russia’s Red Bull junior Daniil Kyvat to race the Dallara #51. In his Formula 3 debut, at Nuremberg’s Norisring, the Kiwi came close to making it to the point’s right way by finishing 11th twice. Meanwhile, Estonian Kevin Korjus will make his FIA Formula 3 European Championship debut, this weekend. He replaces Briton Alexander Sims and races for team ThreeBond with T Sport. 

Raffaele Marciello (Prema Powerteam): “My lead looks comfortable but that’s an error. I learned – at the latest at Zandvoort – that even a big lead doesn’t mean safety. If something goes wrong, such a lead can be lost very quickly. Therefore, I will opt for my usual approach, for the season-finale weekend and won’t allow myself to get distracted by thinking about the possible title triumph. I will fully focus on the job to be done and give my very best. Than we will have to wait and see what happens.”

Felix Rosenqvist (kfzteile24 Mücke Motorsport): “My gap to Raffaele amounts to 45.5 points, prior to the season finale at Hockenheim, but I’m far from giving up and think that my chances of winning the title are still alive. I know that Hockenheim is a racetrack that used to always suit my team and me well. Therefore, this circuit is the perfect place to once again hurl myself with full power and concentration into the battle with Raffaele.”

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.”

F3 European Championship

FIA Formula 3 European Championship, round 8, race 3, Zandvoort (NL)

FELIX ROSENQVIST WINS—battle for the title is open again—

With his second victory, Felix Rosenqvist (kfzteile24 Mücke Motorsport) concluded the eighth race weekend of the FIA Formula 3 European Championship on the Dutch North Sea coast. As points’ leader, Raffaele Marciello (Prema Powerteam) retired early, the Swede was able to reduce his gap in the FIA Formula 3 European Championship drivers’ standings to 9.5 points. At the 4.307 kilometres long Circuit Park Zandvoort, Jordan King (Carlin) and Alex Lynn (Prema Powerteam) followed behind Rosenqvist.

From pole position, Felix Rosenqvist took the lead at the start, followed by Jordan King, who had already overtaken his team-mate Daniil Kvyat (Carlin) on the first few metres. Alex Lynn moved past the Red Bull junior driver on the opening lap as well, so that Kvyat was in fourth place and came under pressure from Raffaele Marciello. Lynn was only able to relax on lap 16, as Marciello crashed into the barriers all on his own and retired. A safety car intervention followed. At the restart with one lap remaining, Rosenqvist held on to his leading position and soon after celebrated his second victory of the season.

British driver, Jordan King, scored his best result in the FIA Formula 3 European Championship to date by finishing second from his compatriot Alex Lynn. After Marciello’s retirement, Luis Felipe Derani (Fortec Motorsports) moved up to fifth place behind Daniil Kvyat and ahead of Harry Tincknell (Carlin). Lucas Auer (Prema Powerteam) only overtook Tom Blomqvist (Eurointernational) for eighth place on the final lap, followed by Alexander Sims (ThreeBond with T-Sport) and Mitchell Gilbert (kfzteile24 Mücke Motorsport).

Felix Rosenqvist (kfzteile24 Mücke Motorsport) 
“I knew that I had a good chance of winning when I would be first into the first corner. Therefore, I focussed on the start and I did well. Then, I tried to manage my tyres and to keep my margin on Jordan consistent. That wasn’t very easy and I had to do my utmost. Of course, this weekend in general was great for me: I have scored 75 points and I was able to close up in the drivers’ standings.” 

Jordan King (Carlin)
“I was able to overtake Daniil at the start and slotted in behind Felix. Unfortunately, after that, I was never close enough to start an attack. After the restart, I didn’t have a chance against Felix either, even though I was able to reduce the gap. All in all, my weekend was quite good. I have moved up from eighth to sixth in the drivers’ standings.”

Alexander Lynn (Prema Powerteam)
“Making it onto the podium from fourth place on the grid is really good, and even more so as I was driving with used tyres in this race. I didn’t have any chance against Felix and Jordan, but I was able to overtake Daniil. With three podium finishes this weekend, I really can’t complain. Now, we have to work on being able to battle for pole position in qualifying again.”