• Thursday , 19 October 2017

Red Bull Ring Race 2: Felix retires after Ocon clash

R2Felix was forced to retire from the second FIA Formula 3 European Championship race of the weekend in Austria, having sustained damage to his Mücke Motorsport machine in a clash with championship leader Esteban Ocon.

From fifth on the grid, Felix did not get the best of starts and dropped behind Ocon (who had been starting sixth), only to produce an emphatic move on the Frenchman at the Remus hairpin just seconds later, grabbing fourth after simultaneously passing team-mate Lucas Auer.

After running wide at the exit of Turn 1 a few laps later, however, Felix was demoted by Ocon once more, although he then stayed right on the gearbox of the Lotus junior until a second safety car appeared as marshals attended to a stricken Dennis van de Laar (the first intervention having come after Jordan King retired with broken suspension).

At the restart, Felix got into Ocon’s slipstream along the start/finish straight, dragging alongside the Prema Powerteam man in a battle over fourth as they entered the braking zone for Turn 1. Ocon then appeared to move over on Felix, who was on the outside, with the resulting contact sending Ocon spinning into the run-off area and Felix into retirement with suspension damage.

The collision marks the second time this year that the duo has clashed, coming on the back of their tangle while disputing the lead at Pau earlier in the season.

The race then featured a third safety car situation after Spike Goddard made contact with Roy Nissany under braking for Remus, sending the Australian T-boning the innocent Sandro Zeller in an incident reminiscent to the Nick Heidfeld/Takuma Sato crash of the 2002 Austrian Grand Prix.

The race was won by Antonio Fuoco, who inherited the win after fellow Italian Antonio Giovinazzi – who crossed the line first - was handed a penalty for a faulty safety car restart process in the closing stages.

Race 3, the final event of this weekend, takes place late this afternoon.

UPDATE: Following the race, Ocon picked up a penalty for the clash with Felix, after the stewards issued the Frenchman with a ten-place grid demotion for Race 3 after judging him to have caused the situation by changing his line under braking. 

FELIX:

“Such a shame – I was feeling really strong in this race and a podium was within reach. This is the second time I and Esteban have clashed this year, and he again changed his line under braking – it was all very similar to what happened at Pau. I was quicker than him and got a good run after the restart, and this retirement really hurts. The car felt strong and I think we were set for a good result. There’s not much to do, however, and hopefully we can bring the weekend to a more positive close in the final race this afternoon, albeit from P8 on the grid.”

RESULTS

Pos. No Driver Laps Time Gap
1 25 Antonio Fuoco / ITA Prema Powerteam 22 35:21.893
2 31 Tom Blomqvist / GBR Jagonya Ayam with Carlin 22 35:22.291 +00.398
3 3 Lucas Auer / AUT kfzteile24 Mücke Motorsport 22 35:23.738 +01.845
4 30 Max Verstappen / NED Van Amersfoort Racing 22 35:25.671 +03.778
5 16 Gustavo Menezes / USA Van Amersfoort Racing 22 35:26.577 +04.684
6 6 Edward Jones / UAE Carlin 22 35:27.630 +05.737
7 20 Sean Gelael / INA Jagonya Ayam with Carlin 22 35:28.237 +06.344
8 1 Nicholas Latifi / CAN Prema Powerteam 22 35:28.998 +07.105
9 15 Jules Szymkowiak / NED Van Amersfoort Racing 22 35:29.724 +07.831
10 12 Alexander Toril / ESP ThreeBond with T-Sport 22 35:30.517 +08.624
11 10 John Bryant-Meisner / SWE Fortec Motorsports 22 35:31.494 +09.601
12 29 Santino Ferrucci / USA Eurointernational 22 35:31.878 +09.985
13 18 Tatiana Calderón / COL Jo Zeller Racing 22 35:32.545 +10.652
14 4 Roy Nissany / ISR kfzteile24 Mücke Motorsport 22 35:34.084 +12.191
15 9 Alfonso Celis / MEX Fortec Motorsports 22 35:36.505 +14.612
16 19 Antonio Giovinazzi / ITA Jagonya Ayam with Carlin 22 35:40.108 +18.215
17 8 Michele Beretta / ITA Eurointernational 22 35:45.650 +23.757
18 28 Jake Dennis / GBR Carlin 21 34:22.397 1L
19 22 Hector Hurst / GBR Team West-TecF3 21 35:38.605 1L
NOT CLASSIFIED
- 17 Sandro Zeller / SUI Jo Zeller Racing 15 23:51.183 7L
- 11 Richard Goddard / AUS ThreeBond with T-Sport 15 23:51.673 7L
- 2 Esteban Ocon / FRA Prema Powerteam 11 18:33.604 11L
- 27 Felix Rosenqvist / SWE kfzteile24 Mücke Motorsport 10 16:26.962 12L
- 26 Dennis van de Laar / NED Prema Powerteam 8 13:03.465 14L
- 21 Félix Serrallés / USA Team West-TecF3 7 11:55.148 15L
- 5 Jordan King / GBR Carlin 2 3:02.078 20L

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