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Chovet extends Asian F3 lead with third Abu Dhabi win

by Ida Wood

Photo: F3 Asian Championship

Pierre-Louis Chovet led from lights-to-flag at Yas Marina Circuit for his fourth Asian Formula 3 win of the season, extending his points lead in the process.

The Frenchman was never seriously threatened up front during the race, making a great start from pole on his new set of tyres to avoid attacks from Abu Dhabi Racing by Prema’s Guanyu Zhou, and doing so again on safety car restarts.

The first interruption of the race came on lap five after Chovet’s Pinnacle Motorsport team-mates Alexandre Bardinon and Matthias Luethen clashed, resulting in Bardinon stopping on track with damage and Luethen retiring in the pits.

The second safety car period came just as Zhou – using the same tyres as in Saturday’s race – was about to come under pressure from team-mate Dino Beganovic for second place, and this time it was because Motorscape driver Nicola Marinangeli and Hitech GP’s Roy Nissany clashed.

Chovet mastered the restart, and didn’t have to worry about a third interruption despite a clash on the green flag lap that led to Evans GP’s Patrik Pasma retiring, caught out Abu Dhabi Racing by Prema’s Amna Al Qubaisi and also caught out several of the Hitech drivers as they tried going four-wide.

In finishing second to Chovet, Zhou reclaimed second in the standings from Mumbai Falcons’ Jehan Daruvala, who finished sixth behind Beganovic and BlackArts Racing pair Lorenzo Fluxa and Cem Bolukbasi.

Daruvala’s team-mate Kush Maini held off pressure from Hitech drivers behind to finish seventh, with Roman Stanek (Hitech), Roberto Faria (Motorscape) and Ayumu Iwasa (Hitech) rounding out the points. Faria is under investigation.

Race results
Pos Driver Team Time
1 Pierre-Louis Chovet Pinnacle Motorsport 13 laps
2 Guanyu Zhou Abu Dhabi Racing by Prema +0.626s
3 Dino Beganovic Abu Dhabi Racing by Prema +1.710s
4 Lorenzo Fluxa BlackArts Racing +2.588s
5 Cem Bolukbasi BlackArts Racing +3.312s
6 Jehan Daruvala Mumbai Falcons +3.951s
7 Kush Maini Mumbai Falcons +5.498s
8 Roman Stanek Hitech GP +6.244s
9 Roberto Faria Motorscape +6.971s
10 Ayumu Iwasa Hitech GP +8.145s
11 Reece Ushijima Evans GP +13.473s
12 Rafael Villagomez BlackArts Racing +14.909s
13 Alessio Deledda Pinnacle Motorsport +15.138s
14 Amna Al Qubaisi Abu Dhabi Racing by Prema +27.383s
Ret Patrik Pasma Evans GP
Ret Roy Nissany Hitech GP
Ret Nicola Marinangeli Motorscape
Ret Matthias Luethen Pinnacle Motorsport
Ret Alexandre Bardinon Pinnacle Motorsport
Ret Isack Hadjar Evans GP
Fastest lap: Zhou, 1m54.642s

Championship standings
1 Chovet 144   2 Zhou 123   3 Daruvala 121   4 Beganovic 88   5 Hadjar 81   6 Nissany 63   7 Iwasa 52   8 Bolukbasi 39   9 Pasma 23   10 Stanek 20