Fortec Motorsports star Johnathan Hoggard has won race one at Donington Park after beating Kiern Jewiss by 0.6 s at the chequered flag to keep his title hopes alive heading into the final day of the season tomorrow.
The teenager from Spalding won from lights-to-flag and set the fastest lap to boot, but was kept honest throughout by Douglas Motorsport driver Jewiss. Manuel Maldonado was 3.9 seconds further behind for a double podium finish for Fortec Motorsports as the Venezuelan beat championship favourite Clement Novalak by 1.2 s at the flag. The result now means that Novalak leads the championship by 38 points heading into races two and three tomorrow and is still clear favourite for the crown.
The race got underway with Hoggard making a great start from pole position and Jewiss held second position over the fast-starting Ulysse De Pauw in third position. But the Belgian’s hard work was soon undone as he ran wide out of the Old Hairpin which dropped him down to fifth position and was unable to make any progress throughout the duration of the race.
Meanwhile, championship contender Ayrton Simmons made a bad start from fourth position and fell to twelfth place within the first 200 metres and while he did make some progress in the race, a ninth-place finish means that he is 70 points behind Novalak with two races left. As he can only score 62 points by virtue of his eighth-place starting position in the reverse-grid race, his title journey draws to a close here.
That made things easier for Novalak, who despite starting sixth, had a relatively comfortable race in fourth position. While unable to catch Maldonado ahead, he was under no pressure from De Pauw and Sasakorn Chaimongkol behind who finished in fifth and sixth places respectively.
The excitment came from Simmons recovery who made two balsy moves, the first was on Lucas Petersson for tenth on lap seven at the Foggarty Esses, before making a similarly brave move on Hampus Ericsson at the Old Hairpin three laps later.
Out front despite the race-long pressure that Jewiss put on him, Hoggard held on to secure his sixth win of the season. Can he do enough to win the title tomorrow?
Race two begins at 10.40 tomorrow morning before the final race of the year at 15.45 to determine the 2019 BRDC British Formula 3 Champion.
Round 22 of 2019 BRDC British Formula 3 Championship Full Race Results:
|1||Johnathan Hoggard||GBR||Fortec Motorsports|
|2||Kiern Jewiss||GBR||Douglas Motorsports|
|3||Manuel Maldonado||VEN||Fortec Motorsports|
|6||Neil Verhagen||USA||Double R Racing|
|8||Ayrton Simmons||GBR||Chris Dittmann Racing|
|9||Hampus Ericsson||SWE||Double R Racing|
|11||Ulysse De Pauw||BEL||Douglas Motorsport|
|12||Josh Mason||GBR||Lanan Racing|
|13||Pavan Ravishankar||SGP||Double R Racing|
|14||Nazim Azman||MAS||Chris Dittmann Racing|
|15||Kris Wright||USA||Fortec Motorsports|