Set in the scenic Eifel Mountains of western Germany, the Nürburgring is one of the most classic motor racing venues on the globe, and host of round nine of the 2014 FIA Formula 3 European Championship. Felix Rosenqvist heads into the weekend eager to return to the podium, having just missed out on the taste of champagne at Austria’s Red Bull Ring two weeks ago.
Flashback: the previous round
FIA F3 European Championship: Red Bull Ring (Round 8)
Length: 3.629 km
Lap record, F3: 1m22.559s (Raffaele Marciello, 2013)
2013 results (Felix): 3/9/5
Race duration: 35 minutes
The original Nürburgring saw the light of day as early as in 1927, and immediately won acclaim as the most challenging circuit in the world. Some were less impressed, however, with triple world champion Jackie Stewart’s love/hate relationship with the venue famously laying the foundation for its subsequent nickname: “the Green Hell”.
To this day, the 20 km “Nordschleife” remains open to tourists wishing to complete a lap behind the wheel of their own car, but the majority of the professional racing events now take place on the much shorter and considerably safer Grand Prix circuit – which continues to host the German Formula 1 Grand Prix on an alteration basis with Hockenheim.
This weekend’s DTM and F3 races will be staged on parts of the Grand Prix circuit, with a hairpin shortcutting the full length of the lap right after the opening Mercedes Arena. The track is dominated by medium-speed corners and two long straights, which both end up in heavy braking zones that also mark the best overtaking opportunities. Traction out of the slow corners is vital at the ‘Ring, and high levels of mechanical grip can hand a well-needed performance advantage.
“We took a step in the right direction in Austria two weeks ago, and our task for this weekend will be to further build on that. The Nürburgring requires good traction out of the slow corners, which is normally an area that plays to the strengths of our car. We were decent there last year, although we did lack some pace compared to our main rivals, and I drove one of my better races that weekend when I came from last to ninth in Race 2. I’m absolutely determined to get back onto the podium – we came close at the Red Bull Ring – and I will try as hard as always to ensure we’re in the running for that.”
All times local (GMT+02:00)
Friday 15 August
Free Practice 1: 12.25 (40 minutes)
Free Practice 2: 13.10 (40 minutes)
Qualifying 1: 18.15 (20 minutes)
Saturday 16 August
Race 1: 11.40 (35 minutes)
Qualifying 2: 18.35 (20 minutes)
Sunday 17 August
Race 2: 11.00 (35 minutes)
Race 3: 15.25 (35 minutes)
HOW IT WORKS – AN FIA F3 EUROPEAN CHAMPIONSHIP QUICK GUIDE
Each round of the FIA Formula 3 European Championship is made up of three races, all of which are of equal length (35 minutes) and importance for the outcome in the title chase. The points structure mirrors that in use in Formula 1, running to the 25-18-15-12-10-8-6-4-2-1 system (with the top ten finishers in each race scoring points).
The grid for all three races is set in the two qualifying sessions. For Race 1, the starting order is established by the outright results of Qualifying 1, while the subsequent second qualifying session forms the grid for Race 2. For Race 3, the grid will be based on each driver’s second-fastest lap in Qualifying 2.
The full 2014 calendar can be viewed here.
FIA Formula 3 European Championship 2014 – teams and drivers
HOW TO FOLLOW FELIX THIS WEEKEND
NOTE: On this particular weekend, www.felixracing.se will not be as frequently updated as is normally the case. There will be no dedicated full-length session reports, with coverage limited to shorter news flashes that are also set to be published on social media networks. There will be a general post-weekend press release summary on Sunday afternoon, and the website will continue to feature the regular picture galleries and live stream links for each of the races (see “TV” segment for further information).
Below, Felix explains the reason behind this weekend’s altered media communication:
All three races at the event will be streamed LIVE at www.fiaf3europe.com, with a feed link set to appear in the slider field at the top of the www.felixracing.se index page. In addition to the real-time broadcasts, a new-for-2014 agreement will also see Eurosport produce a magazine-style wrap-up show to be aired on the Tuesday following each round.
The interaction with fans and followers will principally involve Felix Racing’s official Facebook Fan Page, where supporters can discuss all the goings-on and post potential questions to Felix. Tweets will also be forthcoming through Felix’s own Twitter account (@FRosenqvist).