British F3 - Lundqvist edges Kjaergaard in gripping Rockingham race three

Lundqvist edges Kjaergaard in gripping Rockingham race three

Lundqvist edges Kjaergaard in gripping Rockingham race three

Sunday 29 April 2018

Double R Racing's championship leader Linus Lundqvist extended his advantage at the top of the standings with an exciting and hard fought win in the final BRDC British F3 Championship race of the day at Rockingham.

Starting third, the Swede made a great start to take the lead at turn one, and then rebuffed a constant challenge from a menacing Nicolai Kjaergaard to take his second win of the year. Pole sitter Kush Maini claimed third, with just 0.638s covering the trio at the flag.

Tom Gamble secured fourth ahead of Fortec team mate Manuel Maldonado, with Jordan Cane sixth and Clement Novalak seventh, having started 12th. Krish Mahadik, Sun Yue Yang and Sasakorn Chaimongkol completed the top-10.

In an eventful race, Lundqvist twice had to contend with a safety car, as well as the ever present threat from Kjaergaard. The Swede made the best start from third on the grid to launch into the lead at turn one, passing Kjaergaard and Maini, while Billy Monger also challenged, but was boxed in on the way to Deene.

Once more, there was drama on the first lap as Arvin Esmaeili hit trouble at Deene, with team mate Jamie Chadwick stranded at Chapman and Pavan Ravishankar also failing to complete the first lap. Amongst this drama was the added spice of Lundqvist and Kjaergaard almost wheel to wheel around several corners, before the safety car was deployed to recover the three stranded cars, with Lundqvist just holding off Kjaergaard, with Maini, Monger and Gamble the early top-five. 

The safety car pitted at the end of lap two, with Lundqvist and Kjaergaard resuming their duel. Just behind, a good restart from Monger put him into the slipstream of Maini and the Brit tried a move at Deene, only to be pushed wide on the exit and dropped down to sixth. Lundqvist established a lead of almost nine tenths from Kjaergaard, with Gamble and Mahadik profiting from Monger's scrap with Maini to jump into fourth and fifth. Monger wasn't down and out though, and immediately repassed Mahadik for fifth. 

Lundqvist's lead was trimmed to 0.6s by the end of lap five, with Kjaergaard charging him down, the pair lapping at almost identical speeds. Further back, an excellent scrap developed between Maldonado, Mahadik, Novalak, Cane, Sun Yue Yang and Owega, with the six drivers operating almost as one. The scrap was brought to a close though when Owega challenged Mahadik at Tarzan on lap eight, ran wide and was left stranded, bringing out the safety car for the second time.

The safety car pitted at the end of lap 11, leaving three laps for Kjaergaard to find a way past for the lead. He challenged for the first time at Deene, but Lundqvist held him off, while Monger was challenging Gamble, passing him for fourth at Tarzan, only for Gamble to fight back and retake the position. Lundqvist and Kjaergaard went side by side at Deene once more on lap 13, with Lundqvist just keeping his lead, and bringing Maini into the lead scrap too. Meanwhile Monger was again challenging Gamble at Deene, the Carlin driver opted for the outside line and the pair made contact, forcing Monger out of the race with just over a lap remaining.

With yellow flags flying at a prime overtaking position, Lundqvist was able to keep his cool on the final lap to secure his second victory of the year, and his third podium of the weekend, taking the flag less than three tenths clear of Kjaergaard, and Maini just behind. The top-three were presented with their trophies on the podium by BRDC member and Rockingham Chief Executive Peter Hardman. 

Lundqvist's win means he holds an 11 point lead over Kjaergaard in the championship after six races, with Gamble just five points further behind. 

BRDC British F3 Championship, Rockingham race three result:

1. Linus Lundqvist, Double R Racing, 14 laps 
2. Nicolai Kjaergaard, Carlin, +0.260s
3. Kush Maini, Lanan Racing, +0.638s
4. Tom Gamble, Fortec Motorsports, +3.336s
5. Manuel Maldonado, Fortec Motorsports, +4.073s
6. Jordan Cane, Douglas Motorsport, +4.462s
7. Clement Novalak, Carlin, +4.974s
8. Krish Mahadik, Double R Racing, +6.295s
9. Sun Yue Yang, Carlin, +6.901s
10. Sasakorn Chaimongkol, Hillspeed, +7.216s
11. Chia Wing Hoong, Chris Dittmann Racing, +8.873s
12. Josh Mason, Lanan Racing, +9.563s
13. Ben Hurst, Hillspeed, +11.788s
DNF. Billy Monger, Carlin, 12 laps
DNF. Jusuf Owega, Hillspeed, 7 laps
DNF. Jamie Chadwick, Douglas Motorsport, 0 laps
DNF. Arvin Esmaeili, Douglas Motorsport, 0 laps
DNF. Pavan Ravishankar, Double R Racing, 0 laps
DNS. Tristan Charpentier, Fortec Motorsports

An amended race three result for the BRDC British F3 Championship was issued by the stewards of the meeting at Rockingham, after an eventful final contest.

Car number 22 (Tom Gamble) has been disqualified from fourth place after causing a collision with car 23 (Billy Monger) on the penultimate lap of the race (regulation C1.1.5, Driving in a manner incompatible with general safety).

Car number 17 (Clement Novalak) has been disqualified from seventh place for causing a collision with car 55 (Jamie Chadwick) on lap one (regulation C1.1.5, Driving in a manner incompatible with general safety).

Car number 68 (Chia Wing Hoong) has been disqualified from 11th place for causing a collision with car number 66 (Arvin Esmaeili) on lap one (regulation C1.1.5, Driving in a manner incompatible with general safety).

The amended final result is shown below.

BRDC British F3 Championship, Rockingham race three result:

1. Linus Lundqvist, Double R Racing, 14 laps 
2. Nicolai Kjaergaard, Carlin, +0.260s
3. Kush Maini, Lanan Racing, +0.638s
4. Manuel Maldonado, Fortec Motorsports, +4.073s
5. Jordan Cane, Douglas Motorsport, +4.462s
6. Krish Mahadik, Double R Racing, +6.295s
7. Sun Yue Yang, Carlin, +6.901s
8. Sasakorn Chaimongkol, Hillspeed, +7.216s
9. Josh Mason, Lanan Racing, +9.563s
10. Ben Hurst, Hillspeed, +11.788s

DNF. Billy Monger, Carlin, 12 laps
DNF. Jusuf Owega, Hillspeed, 7 laps
DNF. Jamie Chadwick, Douglas Motorsport, 0 laps
DNF. Arvin Esmaeili, Douglas Motorsport, 0 laps
DNF. Pavan Ravishankar, Double R Racing, 0 laps
DNS. Tristan Charpentier, Fortec Motorsports

DQ. Tom Gamble, Fortec Motorsports
DQ. Clement Novalak, Carlin
DQ. Chia Wing Hoong, Chris Dittmann Racing

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