Clement Novalak became the 2019 BRDC British Formula 3 champion with a race to spare at Donington Park after a title-deciding collision with rival Johnathan Hoggard.
While the focus was on those two drivers, Chris Dittmann Racing secured one-two with Nazim Azman and Ayrton Simmons.
The battle towards the rear of the pack on the opening lap was frantic and Novalak forced Hoggard very wide coming out of Starkey?s Corner, sending both off the circuit and Novalak airborne.
The pair dropped down the field, with Hoggard coming off worse. At that point, the championship was effectively over, compounded when Hoggard went into the pits to have grass removed from his radiator.
The lack of a safety car resigned Hoggard, who had to beat Novalak in this race to take the title fight to the finale, to the back and took a consolidatory fastest lap at the end of the 12-lap race. He finished last, while Novalak climbed back to 12th.
At the front, Azman jumped polesitter Kris Wright off the start, and built up a gap as some of the faster drivers worked their way through the field.
The main pressure for this lead came from team-mate Simmons, who was consistently faster and caught up with a few laps to go. He tried to pass on the inside of the Melbourne Hairpin on lap 10 but locked up severely. After that, he was unable to attack again.
Azman won by just shy of half a second. Double R Racing’s Neil Verhagen rounded out the podium, but only after Novalak’s Carlin team-mate Lucas Petterson ? who finished third on the road ? was penalised for abusing track limits.
Verhagen was pressured hard by Hilspeed’s Sasakorn Chaimongkol, and the pair made light contact in the final corners of the last lap.
Douglas Motorsport driver Kiern Jewiss charged through the pack to finish a strong fifth, ahead of the penalised Petterson, Manuel Maldonado, Kaylen Frederick, Ulysse de Paew and the similarly penalised Hampus Ericsson.
Race result (12 laps)
|1||Nazim Azman||Chris Dittmann Racing||17m20.396s|
|2||Ayrton Simmons||Chris Dittmann Racing||+0.432s|
|3||Neil Verhagen||Double R Racing||+1.957s|
|5||Kiern Jewiss||Douglas Motorsport||+6.275s|
|7||Manuel Maldonado||Fortec Motorsports||+7.795s|
|9||Ulysse De Pauw||Douglas Motorsport||+8.371s|
|10||Hampus Ericsson||Double R Racing||+10.917s|
|11||Kris Wright||Fortec Motorsports||+12.081s|
|13||Joshua Mason||Lanan Racing||+16.976s|
|14||Pavan Ravishankar||Double R Racing||+17.772s|
|15||Johnathan Hoggard||Fortec Motorsports||+38.841s|
|Fastest lap: Hoggard, 1m25.165s