Home Featured F3 street fighters Browning and Mini thrive again in Monaco

F3 street fighters Browning and Mini thrive again in Monaco

by Peter Allen

Photo: Formula Motorsport Ltd

Six months after excelling at the Macau Grand Prix, Luke Browning and Gabriele Mini showed their street circuit prowess again upon returning to Monaco.

Hitech GP driver Browning won in Macau after he and Prema-run Mini – who ultimately finished third – set the pace from the start on their first visits to the track.

The pair were drawn in the same qualifying group in Monaco last week, where Browning was on top before contact with the barriers late on opened the door for Mini to claim pole – and ultimately feature race victory – for the second year in a row.

With Browning this time finishing in third place behind Christian Mansell, Formula Scout asked both he and Mini what their strong performances on such ‘drivers’ circuits’ means to them.

“You’re dead right: Macau, Monaco, these are drivers’ circuits,” Browning replied. “It takes confidence. These fine margins that you play with for a long amount of time. It is really crucial. And it’s how you find the time, something that Gabi’s been extremely successful at over the past couple of years in Monaco.

“And the same for me, to be honest, this is my second time here, but my first time here last year I finished P4. And we were close to pole this time. It’s exciting. I always love coming back here and I think in F3 we’re lucky to race these circuits.”

Mini added: “Usually the street circuits, Monaco, Macau, are drivers’ circuits. It needs to take a lot of confidence with the car and with everything, with the circuit. And then you need to have a lot of courage, a lot of skills, to just go and nail every single corner and every single lap.

“Of course, it’s not an easy task. But I think we delivered quite well both last year and this year. Of course, it’s a good thing driving-wise. But we just need to always keep learning and keep pushing because as it went well this and last year, maybe next year it’s super easy to just do a mistake when it matters. So you need to stay concentrated at all times.”

Mini’s win moved him to the championship lead and he is hopeful of continuing his form, but Browning is just four points behind, having finished inside the top four in all four feature races held so far in 2024.

The Williams junior is confident ahead of the coming races after a strong test at Barcelona last month.

“I feel very positive,” he said. “In the in-season test in Barcelona, especially the race pace looked super strong. I think this might be an advantage to us going forward that I am quite confident with. Also our qualifying consistency has been right there.

“We have a few strong tracks coming up for us now. It’s going to be making the most of this race pace to gain maximum points.”

Additional reporting by Alejandro Alonso Lopez