Joel Eriksson: “I’ve always wanted to win a race at Monza”

Joel Eriksson ticked off a career ambition by winning at Monza on Sunday - Credit: FIA Formula 3 European Championship / Thomas Suer

Joel Eriksson continued his impressive start to his sophomore FIA European Formula 3 Championship season, taking a second race victory and two fourth place finishes at the Autodromo Nazionale Monza.

The Swedish driver revealed that his victory at Monza fulfilled one of his career ambitions, with the Motopark driver holding off the charging Lando Norris in the process to win by just 0.735 seconds.

”This is actually a bit of a dream coming true for me,” said Eriksson. ”I’ve always wanted to win a race at Monza; it’s such a legendary and fast track, so this is definitely a special achievement.

“It was a very good race for us and it went perfectly according to plan. I was pacing myself after opening up a small gap in the first few laps, and even though Lando came pretty close in the end, I always felt in control.”

Eriksson admits he is surprised to have had such a strong start to the season, especially as the two opening events were on circuits he has never previously raced on, and heading to Pau next month he holds a one-point advantage over Norris in the championship standings.

“To be honest, I didn’t expect to be leading the championship after these first two rounds,” said Eriksson. “Both Silverstone and Monza were brand new tracks to me, and the team had limited data from them too, so I have to say this actually exceeds my expectations at this very point of the season.

“From now on, we’ll be going to circuits that I know, and that is going to be helpful – although I’m certainly not taking anything for granted. We have to keep working hard to make sure we can continue to win as many races as possible.”