Arthur Leclerc took his first win of the season at the feature race in England, which puts him second in the championship. Oliver Bearman fought his way up to a great third place.
Arthur Leclerc won today’s Feature Race at Silverstone in the fourth round of the FIA Formula 3 championship. It was the Monegasque’s first win of the year and sees him move up the order in the series, after a less than perfect previous round in Spain. He is now second on 71 points, just six off the leader, Victor Martins. “We put together a great weekend,” commented Arthur. “It started well with second fastest time in qualifying and our pace in the two races lived up to our expectations. The championship fight is very open, yesterday I was fifth in the standings and now I’m second and I think it’s going to be a close fight all the way to the end of the year.”
Oliver’s gritty drive. Leclerc also picked up points from finishing eighth in Race 1, finishing ahead of Oliver Bearman. The 17 year old Englishman staged a great climb up the order in the Feature Race, going from sixth on the grid to third at the flag. “I am very happy to have made it to the podium in my home race,” said Oliver. “It wasn’t an easy race, as I was stuck behind Caio Collet for a long time because of the DRS train. With two laps to go, I finally managed to get by and my pace improved immediately. One more lap and I could probably have finished second. But I’m happy as it went well.” This third place means Bearman moves up to fifth in the classification on 43 points.
Sprint. In the first race of the weekend at Silverstone, Bearman and Leclerc started from seventh and eleventh respectively, because of the first six rows of the grid being inverted from their actual qualifying positions. There were very few overtaking moves in the race, although Leclerc made up one place at the start, but Bearman had a tougher time of it. “I lost a place at the start,” explained Oliver. “Then, while trying to take it back, I was pushed off the track, losing another place so it was a tough first lap.” In the second half of the race, the two Ferrari Academy Drivers were fighting over eighth place, with Arthur coming off best at the chequered flag, beating his team-mate by three tenths of a second.
Feature. In Friday’s qualifying, Leclerc did well to post the second fastest time to start the Feature Race from the front row. It was an exciting first lap, with Oliver managing to move up from sixth to fourth. The Safety Car then froze the positions for three laps and when the race resumed, Leclerc immediately tucked in behind the leader, Zak O’Sullivan, passing him on lap 6. After yet another Safety Car, Arthur did a good job of managing the restart, controlling the situation in the final laps to the chequered flag. Bearman had a more exciting time, finally managing to get ahead of Caio Collet with a daring and spectacular pass to secure a well-deserved third place.