Home Z - Archive seriesFIA European F3 Lucas Auer beats Tom Blomqvist to win final Nurburgring race

Lucas Auer beats Tom Blomqvist to win final Nurburgring race

by Peter Allen
Lucas Auer

FIA Formula 3 European Championship

Lucas Auer claimed his second win of the FIA F3 European Championship season and his first for 23 races as he defeated Tom Blomqvist to take the honours in the third and final encounter of the weekend at the Nurburgring.

There was carnage at the first corner, as pole-sitter Blomqvist and the fast-starting Felix Rosenqvist made contact at the apex of turn one, forcing Rosenqvist to pit for a replacement front wing, and behind, Esteban Ocon and Antonio Giovinazzi came together and were collected by?Nicholas Latifi. The latter three were all forced out of the race together with Dennis van de Laar, and the safety car was called.

At the restart, Auer attacked Blomqvist for the lead, hanging around the outside of turns two and three and then completing a fine move with the inside line at the turn four right-hander. A few laps later, Blomqvist dived down the inside of Auer at turn one but ran deep, enabling Auer to retain the lead.

Blomqvist then dropped two seconds to the Austrian on that lap, but he was able to reduce that gap again over the remainder of the race and catch Auer again in the closing stages. Light rain began to fall, but Auer held on to take his first win since Hockenheim in May.

Max Verstappen completed the podium after a ten-place grid penalty for an engine change following his race two failure left him starting 12th. He avoided the first lap chaos to get up to fifth, and took fourth from Jordan King at the restart. He then went after front row starter Antonio Fuoco, and the two banged wheels at turn two.

Verstappen appeared to have sustained damage in the contact as that was as close as he got to passing Fuoco for some time, but he finally got by at turn one for the penultimate time. Matching Ocon’s race two result brings the gap between the pair back down to 77 points – a gap that Verstappen will need to reduce further next time out to prevent Ocon wrapping up the title.

Fuoco held off King for fourth, some way ahead of an eventful scrap for sixth. Felix Serralles held the place early on but lacked pace, with a train of eight cars forming behind him. Eventually, Roy Nissany was able to get by the Puerto Rican. Tatiana Calderon beat Jake Dennis to eighth and Jules Szymkowiak completed the top ten.

At the back of that train, a recovering Rosenqvist attempted to take 13th from Spike Goddard, but after being forced onto the grass, he then needlessly pushed the Australian into a spin at turn five. The frustrated Swede sustained a broken front wing for the second time in the race, leading to his retirement, while Goddard received a drive-through penalty for forcing Rosenqvist off track.

Ed Jones missed the race after suffering a recurrence of the back injury that kept him out for four rounds in the middle of the year.

Race results
Pos Name Team Time/Gap
1 Lucas Auer Mucke Motorsport 24 laps in 35:28.675
2 Tom Blomqvist Jagonya Ayam with Carlin +0.476
3 Max Verstappen Van Amersfoort Racing +3.623
4 Antonio Fuoco Prema Powerteam +4.945
5 Jordan King Carlin +5.238
6 Roy Nissany Mucke Motorsport +17.415
7 Felix Serralles Team West-Tec +18.599
8 Tatiana Calderon Jo Zeller Racing +19.434
9 Jake Dennis Carlin +20.175
10 Jules Szymkowiak Van Amersfoort Racing +20.770
11 Sean Gelael Jagonya Ayam with Carlin +21.295
12 Alexander Toril ThreeBond with T-Sport +23.088
13 Gustavo Menezes Van Amersfoort Racing +26.453
14 Santino Ferrucci EuroInternational +32.265
15 Michele Beretta EuroInternational +44.592
16 Sandro Zeller Jo Zeller Racing +45.316
17 Spike Goddard ThreeBond with T-Sport +1 lap
18 Andy Chang Team West-Tec +1 lap
Not classified
Felix Rosenqvist Mucke Motorsport +5 laps
Esteban Ocon Prema Powerteam +24 laps
Antonio Giovinazzi Jagonya Ayam with Carlin +24 laps
Nicholas Latifi Prema Powerteam +24 laps
Dennis van de Laar Prema Powerteam +24 laps