Esteban Ocon took his third win of his rookie FIA European Formula 3 Championship season to extend his lead in the standings. The Prema Powerteam driver twice had to contend with the introduction of the safety car, but ended up winning by 2.922s from Austrian Lucas Auer.
It was a confident display from the Frenchman, who is the only driver in 2014 to have won more than once in the seven races so far. He lead away from pole position and was never troubled and controlled the post-safety car restarts perfectly.
Auer was also comfortable in second, the Mucke Motorsport driver finishing ahead of Van Amersfoort Racing’s sixteen-year-old rookie Max Verstappen. For the Dutchman, it was a confident display during his first ever street circuit race in a single-seater car.
Jake Dennis took advantage of Prema Powerteam’s Canadian driver Nicholas Latifi pulling into the pits on the formation lap with a race-ending car issue to finish in fourth in the leading Carlin car, as the Briton continued to improve more as the season goes on. Dennis finished just ahead of his team-mate and the 2013 British Formula 3 champion Jordan King.
Felix Serralles put his qualifying crash behind him to finish sixth for Team West-Tec F3, just ahead of the leading Jagonya Ayam with Carlin driver of Italian Antonio Giovinazzi. Eighth went to another driver who crashed in qualifying in the form of Carlin’s Ed Jones, the Dubai driver showing no ill effects after his big accident on Friday. Richard ‘Spike’ Goddard for ThreeBond with T-Sport, and Sean Galael for Jagonya Ayam with Carlin completed the top ten.
The first safety car period was caused by a crash between ThreeBond with T-Sport Alexander Toril and Fortec Motorsport’s Mitchell Gilbert on the first lap that eliminated them both, while EuroInternational’s Italian racer Michele Beretta ended his day needing to be removed from the track for the second safety car.
For some of the championship favourites it was not a great first race, and the likes of Tom Blomqvist, Antonio Fuoco and Felix Rosenqvist will be hoping for better results in the remaining two races.
Pau Race 1 Result
|1||Esteban Ocon||FRA||Prema Powerteam||35m36.291s|
|2||Lucas Auer||AUT||Mucke Motorsport||+2.922s|
|3||Max Verstappen||NED||Van Amersfoort Racing||+5.951s|
|6||Felix Serralles||PUE||Team West-Tec F3||+14.710s|
|7||Antonio Giovinazzi||ITA||Jagonya Ayam with Carlin||+15.797s|
|9||Richard Goddard||AUS||ThreeBond with T-Sport||+24.022s|
|10||Seal Galael||INO||Jagonya Ayam with Carlin||+24.864s|
|11||Tom Blomqvist||GBR||Jagonya Ayam with Carlin||+26.059s|
|12||John Bryant-Meisner||SWE||Fortec Motorsport||+26.510s|
|13||Dennis van de Laar||NED||Prema Powerteam||+26.715s|
|14||Felix Rosenqvist||SWE||Mucke Motorsport||+28.113s|
|15||Gustavo Menezes||USA||Van Amersfoort Racing||+29.548s|
|16||Felipe Guimaraes||BRZ||Double R Racing||+29.672s|
|17||Antonio Fuoco||ITA||Prema Powerteam||+30.443s|
|18||Tatiana Calderon||COL||Jo Zeller Racing||+34.853s|
|19||Jules Szymkowiak||NED||Van Amersfoort Racing||+35.525s|
|20||Roy Nissany||ISR||Mucke Motorsport||+42.210s|
|21||Hector Hurst||GBR||Team West-Tec F3||+45.011s|
|22||Riccardo Agostini||ITA||EuroInternational||+1 Lap|
|RET||Michele Beretta||ITA||EuroInternational||12 Laps|
|RET||Nicholas Latifi||CAN||Prema Powerteam||0 Laps|
|RET||Mitchell Gilbert||AUS||Fortec Motorsport||0 Laps|
|RET||Alexander Toril||ESP||ThreeBond with T-Sport||0 Laps|