Category Archives: Formula 3

A summary of the top European F3 contenders in 2017

Formula 3 will be the third different category in which Joey Mawson, Harrison Newey, and Mick Schumacher have raced against each other. Mawson had a clear advantage when they were all teammates in German F4 (and beat Schumacher to the title last year with twice as many victories) but the trio now seem to be a bit closer. Between them they won 14 of 16 races in the recent MRF challenge and Newey narrowly claimed the title after passing Mawson in the final laps of the final race.

Schumacher is with the Prema Powerteam who have won the last seven championships in a row so they will give him the best possible chance of success. Mick is fast but tends to make mistakes so he will need to match speed with consistency to prove he is more than just a surname. His teammates will be Callum Ilott and Maximilian Gunther who are two of the strongest drivers from last year to line up again. Gunther was the 2016 runner up to Lance Stroll whilst Ilott (who was once part of the Red Bull young driver program) took six podiums and a pair of victories. Both are expecting to be title contenders.

Ilott and Gunther were outscored by Joel Eriksson over the final 6 races in 2016. Eriksson was very consistent with 10 podiums and will be a title threat this year if those 2nds and 3rds turn into wins. In the final race of 2016, Eriksson was joined on the podium by Jake Hughes who performed well in a one-off guest appearance. Hughes joins Formula 3 full-time this year after winning multiple races in last year’s faster GP3 championship. In theory this should be quite good preparation against a field of less experienced runners.

If any of the seven drivers above want to win the title in 2017, they will have to beat Lando Norris. The 17 year old is part of McLaren’s young driver program and won three different single-seater championships last year alone. He is one of the best young drivers in the world and, after proving quick in testing, he will be hard to beat.

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Flashback to the 1990 Macau Grand Prix : Schumacher vs Hakkinen

The Macau F3 GP takes place this weekend so here’s a great flashback to the 1990 event when Michael Schumacher and Mika Hakkinen crashed whilst fighting for the lead. Neither driver accepted full responsibility and the incident planted a seed that grew into a legendary F1 rivalry. One story claims Schumacher spoke to Hakkinen quite nicely after the Macau race but was later very critical of Mika in the press. Hakkinen didn’t appreciate Michael’s approach to the media so when the two drivers clashed again at Spa Francorchamps in 2000 he did the complete opposite (lecturing Michael in private but remaining calm and friendly for reporters).

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F3: Formula Three officials stopped a race early due to poor driving standards

After a series of wild Formula Three accidents at Monza on Saturday (see the video) officials warned drivers that Sunday’s racing would be stopped if the racing standards didn’t improve. Incredibly, the sloppy racecraft did continue on Sunday and the officials followed through with their threat to send everyone home early. The final race of the weekend was stopped with 11 laps remaining and half points were awarded because the driving standards were “not acceptable”. That’s one of the strangest red flags you’ll ever see.

The decision sent a clear signal to drivers that careless manoeuvres won’t be tolerated. Unfortunately, it also punished those who did nothing wrong, particularly Felix Rosenqvist who only received half points for his win (something that could have championship implications). It will be interesting to see how officials target racing incidents from now on.

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F3: Felix Rosenqvist overtook 51 cars in 36 laps

FRS

Felix Rosenqvist currently lies second in the European Formula Three Championship, which is quite amazing because there have only been three races so far and he started two of those from last on the grid! At the recent Silverstone round Rosenqvist surged from 35th to 7th in race two, and made it up to 12th in race three, giving him the distinction of passing 51 cars in 36 racing laps (and making him a championship favourite). Great stuff.

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