Callum Ilott: “The whole weekend was really strong”

Callum Ilott secured victory in race three at Silverstone - Credit: FIA Formula 3 European Championship / Thomas Suer

Callum Ilott left Silverstone on Sunday a much happier driver than he would have done on Friday and Saturday after claiming his first win of a weekend that he showed great pace throughout.

The Prema Powerteam racer had crashed out of race one on Friday whilst running second behind Lando Norris early on, before finishing second to Joel Eriksson in race two on Saturday, having lost the lead when the Swede passed him around the outside at Brooklands.

Eriksson pulled off an almost identical move on the first lap in race three on Sunday, but unlike in Saturday’s race, Ilott came back charging and reclaimed the lead with a great move of his own at the end of the Hangar Straight heading into Stowe.

“Friday wasn’t the best of days, I was meant to get points, that was my aim, and I obviously didn’t succeed at that,” said Ilott to The Checkered Flag. “Saturday was better but still only P2, especially from pole. 

“But then today, starting from pole. Went back down to P2 but had a lot more pace, and a lot better warm up procedures, so I managed to get into P1 and pull away a little bit.

“I was a bit like, ‘oh I failed again’ but I knew I had a lot more pace, and I was trying to get as close as possible and make him make a mistake, and I was successful with that, and made the most of it.”

When asked what he can take away from Silverstone, the feels the momentum will be with him as the championship heads to Prema’s home track at the Autodromo Nazionale Monza at the end of the month, and believes they should be able to start the weekend on the front foot.

“I think it’s momentum in a way, obviously I did not start so well,” said Ilott.  “Qualifying was good, but Monza is the home track for them, I think we’ll have a good start [there] and do a good job.”

Ilott feels positive within his new team, even after the race one adventure into the gravel trap, which he admits he was not expecting to happen when it did, but the Briton was happy to have had a strong car all weekend long.

“They’re doing a good job,” said Ilott.  “The car is good, and the whole weekend I’ve had a good car.  Okay, race one I got caught out a little bit in the damp patch, and to be honest, if you look at the data I’m going 7Kph slower into the corner than the lap before, so for me it was unexpected. 

“You can see from the video it just goes!  It was a bit annoying really, because I didn’t feel I made a mistake, it was just something that happened.  But the whole weekend was really strong in terms of the car and performance.”