• Sunday , 19 November 2017

Felix in race-ending clash after victory dispute

IMG_3863Felix was thrown into retirement – literally – when he clashed with leader Esteban Ocon in pursuit of victory in the second FIA Formula 3 European Championship race of the weekend at Pau.

The race was started behind the safety car after overnight rain had saturated the demanding street circuit, with Ocon, Felix and Max Verstappen opening up an instant gap over the rest of the field once racing got underway for real on lap six.

Verstappen couldn’t quite keep up with the pace established by Ocon and Felix up front, and the race increasingly turned into a two-way fight between France and Sweden. When Verstappen crashed out at the infamous Foch chicane on lap 11, all threats from behind seemed to have vanished, with Tom Blomqvist now sitting third a full 12 seconds in arrears.

Felix and Ocon swapped fastest laps as they gradually upped the pace on a drying track, until Felix finally laid down the hammer with a 1m22.871s effort on lap 13 that would stand as the fastest time of the race (half a second quicker than Ocon’s best). As they set out on lap 14, Felix was right on Ocon’s gearbox – and went for an attack going into the Pont Oscar hairpin.

He dragged himself alongside Ocon under braking for the corner, but the Frenchman suddenly steered back across – right into the path of Felix. The pair made contact, sending Felix into the barriers and inevitable retirement. Ocon, however, could continue, although he later missed out on victory after losing out to Blomqvist following a second safety car phase in the closing stages.

The stewards investigated the matter, but opted to take no action on Ocon, who therefore kept second place.

Felix will be given another shot at the podium in the concluding Race 3 later this afternoon.

FELIX:

“Such a shame. I felt a lot quicker than Esteban, and he always braked very early at Pont Oscar – so I decided that was the place to make the move. I got up alongside him into the corner, but then he steered across on me under braking. There was nowhere to go and the race was over. At least the pace was very strong today, and there is still one more race to go. We’ll try again by then.”

RESULTS

Pos. No Driver Laps Time Gap
1 31 Tom Blomqvist / GBR Jagonya Ayam with Carlin 22 36:11.933 -
2 2 Esteban Ocon / FRA Prema Powerteam 22 36:16.484 4.551
3 28 Jake Dennis / GBR Carlin 22 36:16.585 4.652
4 19 Antonio Giovinazzi / ITA Jagonya Ayam with Carlin 22 36:16.843 4.910
5 26 Dennis van de Laar / NED Prema Powerteam 22 36:17.352 5.419
6 9 Mitchell Gilbert / AUS Fortec Motorsports 22 36:21.267 9.334
7 3 Lucas Auer / AUT kfzteile24 Mücke Motorsport 22 36:21.534 9.601
8 21 Félix Serrallés / USA Team West-TecF3 22 36:22.022 10.089
9 4 Roy Nissany / ISR kfzteile24 Mücke Motorsport 22 36:28.780 16.847
10 22 Hector Hurst / GBR Team West-TecF3 22 36:30.510 18.577
11 10 John Bryant-Meisner / SWE Fortec Motorsports 22 36:32.135 20.202
12 8 Michele Beretta / ITA Eurointernational 22 36:42.402 30.469
13 16 Gustavo Menezes / USA Van Amersfoort Racing 22 36:45.946 34.013
14 7 Riccardo Agostini / ITA Eurointernational 22 36:46.570 34.637
15 14 Felipe Guimaraes / BRA Double R Racing 21 36:22.502 1  Lp.
16 12 Alexander Toril / ESP ThreeBond with T-Sport 21 36:31.244 1  Lp.
17 1 Nicholas Latifi / CAN Prema Powerteam 20 33:24.943 2  Lp.
18 5 Jordan King / GBR Carlin 20 33:25.490 2  Lp.
19 25 Antonio Fuoco / ITA Prema Powerteam 20 33:29.268 2  Lp.
NOT CLASSIFIED
- 6 Edward Jones / UAE Carlin 16 26:38.690 6  Lp.
- 18 Tatiana Calderón / COL Jo Zeller Racing 15 25:13.000 7  Lp.
- 15 Jules Szymkowiak / NED Van Amersfoort Racing 15 25:59.335 7  Lp.
- 27 Felix Rosenqvist / SWE kfzteile24 Mücke Motorsport 13 21:38.456 9  Lp.
- 20 Sean Gelael / INA Jagonya Ayam with Carlin 13 22:18.625 9  Lp.
- 30 Max Verstappen / NED Van Amersfoort Racing 11 18:55.456 11  Lp.
- 11 Richard Goddard / AUS ThreeBond with T-Sport 7 13:42.931 15  Lp.

 

 

 

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