European Formula 3Interviews

Joel Eriksson: “I told myself yesterday that today I’m going for it”

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Joel Eriksson took victory in race two at Silverstone - Credit: Paul Davies Photography

Joel Eriksson secured only his second career FIA European Formula 3 Championship victory and his first of 2017 in race two at Silverstone on Saturday, and felt the move he made on Callum Ilott to take the lead on the opening lap was hard to pull off.

The Motopark driver swept around the outside of the Prema Powerteam driver heading into Brooklands, and then edged out a lead of around two-and-a-half seconds before Ilott came fighting back, but the Swede had enough in the tank to move away again at the end of the race to ensure victory.

After finishing fourth during Friday’s opening race, where Eriksson admitted he played it a little safe due to the tricky conditions, he revealed that he knew Saturday’s race was the time to start pushing, and he did it to great effect.

“It was really, really good,” said Eriksson to The Checkered Flag.  “We started the first race yesterday, I would say, really hard conditions, for me it was just to bring the car home and collect as many points as possible. 

“As we could see there were many cars running off, so just bring the car home, collect the points.  But then I told myself yesterday that today I’m going for it.

“I did a really good start, got a slipstream towards turn seven, and he was closing the door but I went for the outside and I thought, ‘yes, I’m going to overtake him now’, and followed him on the outside and made the overtake.  It was a pretty hard overtake, but I did it, so no problem!

“At the beginning I was using everything in the car to pull a gap, and I made a gap and then used it to control the pace for the whole race.”

Heading into Sunday’s final race, Eriksson is hopeful that the conditions are the same as they were on Saturday to hopefully give him the chance of a repeat result.

“Hopefully the weather will stay like this tomorrow, then for sure we’ll have a good pace,” said Eriksson.

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