Home News Oliver Rowland ends FR3.5 season with second victory

Oliver Rowland ends FR3.5 season with second victory

by Peter Allen
Oliver Rowland

Photo: Jakob Ebrey Photography

Oliver Rowland scored his second Formula Renault 3.5 victory in the final race of the season at Jerez.

After narrowly missing out on victory in race one, Rowland started race two from pole position thanks to a penalty for Roberto Merhi.

Pierre Gasly got the better start from alongside Rowland on the front row, but the Briton held the lead on the inside line. The two long-time rivals made their mandatory pitstop together but Gasly suffered a slow stop, relegating him behind his Arden team-mate Will Buller and allowing Rowland to escape.

Rowland’s lead was heading towards ten seconds when the safety car was deployed to retrieve the cars of Matias Laine and Jazeman Jaafar from the gravel trap.

Rowland was able to stretch away again after the restart, winning the race with a seven-second advantage.

Nicholas Latifi continued to impress after qualifying fourth, recovering from losing a place early on to Buller to rejoin from his own pitstop ahead of Gasly and then passing Buller at turn two at the restart for second place. The Canadian held that position until the end as his decision to choose FR3.5 over F3 this weekend paid off handsomely.

Buller had to spend the rest of the race defending from Gasly, but held on to score his first podium in the series. Gasly still celebrated fourth place, as it was enough for him to take the runner-up spot in the championship away from Roberto Merhi.

Merhi ran behind Gasly in third at first but then suffered a technical problem in his pitstop. He got back out on track, but had to crawl around back to the pits to complete a double non-finish at the final weekend.

Sergey Sirotkin recovered from qualifying down in 11th place to finish in fifth ahead of Pietro Fantin, Oscar Tunjo, Matthieu Vaxiviere and Marlon Stockinger.

Norman Nato took the final point in tenth ahead of team-mate and champion Carlos Sainz, as DAMS held on to the lead of the teams’ standings by just three points from Fortec.

Race results
Pos Driver Team Time/Gap
1 Oliver Rowland Fortec Motorsports 26 laps in 42:09.126
2 Nicholas Latifi Tech 1 Racing +7.703
3 William Buller Arden Motorsport +15.879
4 Pierre Gasly Arden Motorsport +16.608
5 Sergey Sirotkin Fortec Motorsports +18.752
6 Pietro Fantin International Draco Racing +21.269
7 Oscar Tunjo Pons Racing +21.730
8 Matthieu Vaxiviere Lotus +22.349
9 Marlon Stockinger Lotus +22.751
10 Norman Nato DAMS +24.573
11 Carlos Sainz DAMS +25.243
12 Beitske Visser AVF +28.250
13 Will Stevens Strakka Racing +29.809
14 Zoel Amberg AVF +30.363
15 Meindert van Buuren Pons Racing +31.146
Jazeman Jaafar ISR +12 laps
Matias Laine Strakka Racing +12 laps
Marco Sorensen Tech 1 Racing +18 laps
Roberto Merhi Zeta Corse +19 laps
Roman Mavlanov Zeta Corse +25 laps
Luca Ghiotto International Draco Racing +26 laps