Felix was handed a drive-through penalty for exceeding track limits when running second in the final race of the weekend at the Hungaroring, bringing a memorable around-the-outside move on Lucas Auer and Antonio Fuoco on the opening lap to nothing as the never-ending run of 2014 misfortune continued on Sunday.
From fourth on the grid, Felix got away well off the line despite sitting on the dirty side of the circuit, immediately joining a scrap for the leading positions as the field headed towards the first corner. On the approach to Turn 2, he then opted for the outside as his rivals covered up the apex, pulling off a remarkable move around Auer and Fuoco to not only draw the eyes of the spectators, but also to hand himself second place.
Over the next few laps, Felix and race leader Esteban Ocon were in a class of their own, lapping half a second quicker than anyone else could manage. The gap over third-placed Fuoco – who had passed Auer at the chicane further around the opening lap – grew steadily while a drizzle of light rain hit the circuit to make conditions extra tricky.
Felix had just set the fastest lap of the race when the stewards dealt their blow: drive-through penalty for exceeding track limits. The punishment not only marked the end of Felix’s victory or podium attack, but to any hopes of finishing inside the top ten points-paying positions.
The race was eventually red-flagged prematurely as the rain intensified, with Felix being classified in 17th having set the second-fastest lap of the race and the outright benchmark in sector three. Ocon emerged victorious for the second time today.
“I think that was a very tough decision. First of all, I was given no previous notice that I was under investigation, and there was no warning flag before the penalty was handed out. Secondly, the penalty was based on an occasion when I ran off the track just after the rain began to fall at Turn 4. There was no gain whatsoever, and most of the field did the same. If you look at the first lap alone, almost everyone went outside the white line at Turn 11. I do accept the decision, as always, but it won’t stop me from feeling disappointed that it was taken. It was a real shame, because the car felt as strong as it’s been all weekend and the pace was good. I think I could have challenged Esteban, particularly when the rain intensified later on, but we’ll give it another shot next time out at Spa.”
|1||2||Esteban Ocon / FRA Prema Powerteam||17||28:11.326|
|2||25||Antonio Fuoco / ITA Prema Powerteam||17||28:16.082||+04.756|
|3||3||Lucas Auer / AUT kfzteile24 Mücke Motorsport||17||28:16.989||+05.663|
|4||30||Max Verstappen / NED Van Amersfoort Racing||17||28:18.201||+06.875|
|5||19||Antonio Giovinazzi / ITA Jagonya Ayam with Carlin||17||28:19.716||+08.390|
|6||31||Tom Blomqvist / GBR Jagonya Ayam with Carlin||17||28:20.227||+08.901|
|7||21||Félix Serrallés / USA Team West-TecF3||17||28:22.468||+11.142|
|8||16||Gustavo Menezes / USA Van Amersfoort Racing||17||28:25.488||+14.162|
|9||28||Jake Dennis / GBR Carlin||17||28:27.450||+16.124|
|10||1||Nicholas Latifi / CAN Prema Powerteam||17||28:28.360||+17.034|
|11||4||Roy Nissany / ISR kfzteile24 Mücke Motorsport||17||28:31.914||+20.588|
|12||10||John Bryant-Meisner / SWE Fortec Motorsports||17||28:33.385||+22.059|
|13||20||Sean Gelael / INA Jagonya Ayam with Carlin||17||28:35.287||+23.961|
|14||26||Dennis van de Laar / NED Prema Powerteam||17||28:36.175||+24.849|
|15||15||Jules Szymkowiak / NED Van Amersfoort Racing||17||28:36.459||+25.133|
|16||18||Tatiana Calderón / COL Jo Zeller Racing||17||28:37.590||+26.264|
|17||27||Felix Rosenqvist / SWE kfzteile24 Mücke Motorsport||17||28:38.236||+26.910|
|18||12||Alexander Toril / ESP ThreeBond with T-Sport||17||28:41.806||+30.480|
|19||22||Hector Hurst / GBR Team West-TecF3||17||28:46.823||+35.497|
|20||14||Felipe Guimaraes / BRA Double R Racing||17||28:47.143||+35.817|
|21||8||Michele Beretta / ITA Eurointernational||17||28:51.235||+39.909|
|22||11||Richard Goddard / AUS ThreeBond with T-Sport||17||28:53.036||+41.710|
|23||9||Mitchell Gilbert / AUS Fortec Motorsports||17||28:57.520||+46.194|
|–||17||Sandro Zeller / SUI Jo Zeller Racing||0|