MP Motorsport’s Franco Colapinto is now the leading contender to be the 2023 FIA Formula 3 Championship runner-up after winning the Monza sprint race.
Colapinto was promoted onto reversed-grid pole following multiple penalties in qualifying, and lost the lead to team-mate Mari Boya on lap one as he made a stronger start.
ART Grand Prix’s Nikola Tsolov also jumped Colapinto by out-accelerating him out of the first corner, but Colapinto got back past him at the della Roggia chicane. Taylor Barnard also passed Tsolov there, while his team-mate Gregoire Saucy did some corner-cutting to get into third.
The safety car was then summoned due to incidents behind. Van Amersfoort Racing’s Caio Collet touched the rear-left tyre of Prema’s Paul Aron in the straight right after the start, causing the Mercedes junior a puncture. As a consequence, Aron lost control under braking and hit Campos Racing’s Pepe Marti at the first chicane, who hit MP’s Jonny Edgar on his outside. Aron and Edgar came to a halt, whereas Marti tried to continue. However, he went off at Lesmo 1 with front-left suspension failure, consequence of previous impact. Collet managed to get around to the pits for a new nosecone and tyre.
Racing resumed on lap five and Boya left it late to return to racing speeds. O’Sullivan passed Tsolov and then Barnard to get into fourth, but could not challenge the top three until lap 10 when he went around the outside of Saucy at turn one while Colapinto reclaimed the lead from Boya.
Saucy however was not giving in, and he tried staying alongside O’Sullivan until they clashed and Saucy punctured.
Boya got back into first place into the first chicane on lap 12, with Colapinto returning the favour the next lap. He resisted Boya thereon, who had to defend from new champion Gabriel Bortoleto going into turn on on the final lap. He defended well, but Bortoleto got past him at the della Roggia chicane after almost being pushed off at Curva Grande.
Bortoleto had started eighth and gained one spot on lap one, but then lost it again after the lap five restart. On lap seven he passed Tsolov and re-passed Christian Mansell, then got by O’Sullivan and Barnard to be third by lap 10. After that he saved his tyres before pressuring and passing Boya at the end.
Barnard finished fourth, and a 10s penalty for his contact with Saucy dropped O’Sullivann from fifth to 12th. That meant Luke Browning’s penultimate lap pass on Leonardo Fornaroli ended up being for fifth, having started 27th.
Similarly remarkable was Oliver Goethe’s charge from 22nd to seventh. He gained 11 places on lap one, then set the fastest lap as he picked off drivers. He was sixth by lap 11, but when he tried passing O’Sullivan on lap 15 he had a big lock-up and took to the run-off. Fornaroli and Browning passed him a lap later, leaving him in seventh once O’Sullivan’s penalty was applied.
Gabriele Mini finished eighth, and he is the last of the six contenders split by 20 points who will go into tomorrow contending to be title runner-up.
Race result (18 laps)
|1||Franco Colapinto||MP Motorsport||34m06.988s|
|3||Mari Boya||MP Motorsport||+2.118s|
|4||Taylor Barnard||Jenzer Motorsport||+2.322s|
|5||Luke Browning||Hitech GP||+3.200s|
|8||Gabriele Mini||Hitech GP||+9.885s|
|9||Christian Mansell||Campos Racing||+11.086s|
|10||Nikola Tsolov||ART Grand Prix||+11.467s|
|11||Rafael Villagomez||Van Amersfoort Racing||+12.134s|
|13||Sebastian Montoya||Hitech GP||+12.766s|
|15||Joshua Dufek||Campos Racing||+16.532s|
|16||Nikita Bedrin||Jenzer Motorsport||+20.035s|
|17||Sophia Floersch||PHM by Charouz||+20.338s|
|18||Alex Garcia||Jenzer Motorsport||+21.291s|
|20||Caio Collet||Van Amersfoort Racing||+23.684s|
|21||Kaylen Frederick||ART Grand Prix||+30.924s|
|23||Gregoire Saucy||ART Grand Prix||+1m36.911s|
|Ret||Roberto Faria||PHM by Charouz|
|Ret||Tommy Smith||Van Amersfoort Racing|
|Ret||Michael Shin||PHM by Charouz|
|Ret||Pepe Marti||Campos Racing|
|Ret||Jonny Edgar||MP Motorsport|
|Fastest lap: Goethe, 1m39.743s