It’s been a mixed day for many of the BRDC British F3 Championship runners who have found themselves struggling in the Belgian heat at Spa-Francorchamps. Some have been less fazed though, with Toby Sowery topping the overall classifications.
The Lanan Racing driver has more experience than most around the 7km circuit, with the pace proving it throughout. Sowery was immediately up front during the opening minutes, remaining towards the sharp end and eventually setting the fastest overall time.
Session two saw him fail to improve, dropping to fourth overall, after an improvement on his final lap saw him jump a number of positions. The final session proved his dominance though and as the track started to cool, he moved back to the head of the field, topping session three, albeit 0.013 seconds off his session one personal best.
Enaam Ahmed had been the driver fastest in session two, when the cars for slowest of all. His pace during the midday sun though will be encouraging for him though, with the heat potentially becoming a factor during Friday running.
Ahmed though, would also finish third thanks to a superb run from Callan O’Keefe who was runner-up in both the second and third sessions.
O’Keeffe has raced here before thanks to Formula Renault, but with a year out if racing, the South African was keen to prove he was still on the pace for the rest of the year. Ahmed and Chase Owen would complete the top four, to the surprise of even the American.
Those four proved to be the drivers to beat all day with Sowery hoping to close up at a circuit that Carlin are traditionally poor at.
As for the other Carlin runners, Cameron Das was fifth overall, while James Pull could only manage seventh in the standings behind Jordan Cane, with the Carlin driver unable to drop below the 2min 20sec barrier.
Completing the top ten overall was rookie Linus Lundqvist in the highest placed Double R Racing car, with Ben Hingeley and Tristan Charpantier behind. Having won his second race of the year at Silverstone, Hingeley struggled to find the pace, even causing a red flag in first practice.
It would be Guilherme Samaia who’d bring out another red flag in session three, though at least he’ll be racing, with Aaron di Comberti choosing not to appear for the blue ribbon event of the season after rumoured disagreements with the team.