Mick Schumacher took over the lead of the FIA European Formula 3 Championship after a lights-to-flag victory in the opening race of the weekend at a soggy Red Bull Ring on Saturday morning.
The German’s fourth consecutive victory, coupled with Daniel Ticktum finishing only eighth, means Schumacher now holds the advantage in the Drivers’ Championship, sitting eighteen points clear with five races of the season remaining.
Pre-race rain had left the track soaking prior to the race, but despite the tricky conditions, Schumacher was able to retain the lead into turn one ahead of Prema Theodore Racing team-mate Robert Shwartzman, while Ticktum dropped from sixth on the grid to tenth after a difficult opening lap for the Motopark driver.
Shwartzman put pressure on Schumacher but was unable to find a way ahead, but the Russian was untroubled as he finished second for a fourth consecutive race to his team-mate, but the track action for the remaining places inside the top ten was thrilling throughout.
Alex Palou completed the podium for Hitech Bullfrog GP despite having started thirteenth on the grid, with the Spaniard jumping up to sixth early before passing Jüri Vips for fifth on lap three.
Ferdinand Habsburg had initially jumped up to fourth on the opening lap and then moved up to third ahead of Marcus Armstrong to run third on lap three, but the Carlin driver was asked to concede a place to Vips after stewards felt his pass on the Estonian was illegal after it began after running off track at turn three. Had he not complied he would have been handed a drive-through penalty, with Habsburg dropping down to sixth, behind Armstrong, Palou and Vips.
Palou enjoyed a battle with Prema Theodore Racing’s Armstrong for the final spot on the podium, coming out on top at turn six before pulling away from the New Zealander, although he was too far away from the leading duo to do anything about advancing any further.
Habsburg managed to pass both Vips and Armstrong once more but found his tyres fading in the closing stages, which allowed the latter to reclaim fourth. Vips finished sixth ahead of Motopark team-mates Jonathan Aberdein, Ticktum and Fabio Scherer, while Carlin’s Jehan Daruvala claimed the final point.
Ticktum enjoyed a great battle with Daruvala for eighth place on the road, the duo going side by side for almost a full lap before the Briton got the advantage, while Scherer also found his way passed the Indian, who was able to retain the final place in the points despite the close attention of team-mate Sacha Fenestraz and Prema Theodore Racing’s Guanyu Zhou.
Red Bull Ring Race 1 Result
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