2015 Toro Rosso Formula 1 driver Max Verstappen took victory for the ninth time in 2014 but it was not enough to prevent Esteban Ocon from claiming the FIA European Formula 3 Championship at Imola.
Prema Powerteam driver Ocon’s third place finish meant he secured the title with three races to spare.
Van Amersfoort Racing driver Verstappen had to battle past Antonio Fuoco of for the win, after the Italian had jumped ahead the Dutchman at the start. Fuoco was able to finish second, and dedicated his podium finish to his fellow Ferrari Driver Academy driver Jules Bianchi.
Nicholas Latifi claimed fourth on a good day for Prema Powerteam, ahead of Tom Blomqvist of Jagonya Ayam with Carlin, with the Briton now in a close battle with Verstappen for the runners-up spot in the championship that will be decided next weekend at Hockenheim.
William Buller secured points on Signature’s return to the series for sixth, holding off Jake Dennis of Carlin in seventh, while Lucas Auer finished eighth for Mücke Motorsport.
Felix Serralles finished ninth for Team West-Tec F3, while Gustavo Menezes completed the top ten after a late race move on Jordan King.
There were three safety car periods during the race, with the race distance shortened to sixteen laps from the scheduled twenty due to those safety car interruptions.
The first was to clear Antonio Giovinazzi’s Jagonya Ayam with Carlin machine from the track after he clashed with Carlin driver Ed Jones on the opening lap, while the second was for Sandro Zeller who crashed his Jo Zeller Racing machine in a big way.
The third was for Felix Rosenqvist of Mücke Motorsport, who clashed with King going into Tamburello, with the Swede shaken but unhurt after becoming briefly airborne.
Imola Race 3 Result
|1||Max Verstappen||NED||Van Amersfoort Racing||36m15.097s|
|2||Antonio Fuoco||ITA||Prema Powerteam||+2.100s|
|3||Esteban Ocon||FRA||Prema Powerteam||+3.066s|
|4||Nicholas Latifi||CAN||Prema Powerteam||+3.650s|
|5||Tom Blomqvist||GBR||Jagonya Ayam with Carlin||+4.030s|
|8||Lucas Auer||AUT||Mücke Motorsport||+7.960s|
|9||Felix Serralles||PUE||Team West-Tec F3||+8.291s|
|10||Gustavo Menezes||USA||Van Amersfoort Racing||+9.391s|
|12||Roy Nissany||ISR||Mücke Motorsport||+11.070s|
|13||Dennis van de Laar||NED||Prema Powerteam||+11.969s|
|14||Jules Szymkowiak||NED||Van Amersfoort Racing||+12.786s|
|15||Alexander Toril||ESP||ThreeBond with T-Sport||+13.846s|
|16||Santino Ferrucci||USA||Fortec Motorsports||+16.144s|
|18||Andy Chang||CHN||Team West-Tec F3||+17.998s|
|19||Richard Goddard||AUS||ThreeBond with T-Sport||+18.254s|
|20||Martin Cao||CHN||Fortec Motorsports||+19.089s|
|21||Sergio Sette Camara||BRZ||EuroInternational||+19.395s|
|22||Nick Cassidy||NZL||ThreeBond with T-Sport||+24.934s|
|RET||Felix Rosenqvist||SWE||Mücke Motorsport||10 Laps|
|RET||Tatiana Calderon||COL||Jo Zeller Racing||5 Laps|
|RET||Sean Galael||INO||Jagonya Ayam with Carlin||4 Laps|
|RET||Sandro Zeller||SWI||Jo Zeller Racing||3 Laps|
|RET||Ed Jones||UAE||Carlin||0 Laps|
|RET||Antonio Giovinazzi||ITA||Jagonya Ayam with Carlin||0 Laps|