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O’Sullivan celebrates GB3 title with Donington Park win

by Steve Whitfield

Photo: Jakob Ebrey Photography

Newly-crowned GB3 champion Zak O’Sullivan took his sixth victory of the season after a chaotic start to the opening race of the weekend at Donington Park.

The Carlin driver led away from pole into Redgate, and resisted pressure from the fast-starting Reece Ushijima through the Craner Curves to remain in front before the safety car was deployed at the end of the lap following a number of incidents.

Front-row starter Bart Horsten lost out to Hitech GP team-mates Ushijima and Sebastian Alvarez off the line, but contact with the latter at Redgate left Horsten with a broken front wing and requiring a visit to the pits.

Alvarez was then rear-ended at Macleans by Carlin’s Christian Mansell, putting him out, with Ayrton Simmons (Chris Dittmann Racing) and Roberto Faria (Fortec Motorsports) both dropping to the back of the field by taking avoiding action through the gravel.

As the safety car was deployed, Reema Juffali was collected at Melbourne hairpin by Douglas Motorsport team-mate Tommy Smith, who was unable to downshift due to a mechanical issue, putting both cars out.

O’Sullivan controlled the remainder of the race after the resumption to win by 0.961 seconds from Ushijima, who kept himself in the leader’s mirrors throughout. With the lap one issues for his rivals, Ushijima has moved into fourth in the standings and is now just 15 points behind Simmons in second.

Arden’s Roman Bilinski was a further six seconds back in third and just half a second ahead of CDR’s Branden Lee Oxley, who scored his best result in GB3 so far.

Tom Lebbon was fifth for Elite Motorsport, and Carlin’s Bryce Aron narrowly beat Elite’s Javier Sagrera to sixth.

Frederick Lubin was eighth for Arden ahead of returnee Alex Fores (CDR) and debutant James Hedley (Elite). 

Simmons came home 11th after the first-lap mele, with Mansell 12th and Faria 13th. A wheel-gun issue during his early stop resulted in Horsten returning to the pits to fix a wheel issue and was the last of the finishers.

Race results (12 laps)

Pos Name Team Time
1 Zak O’Sullivan Carlin 19m15.042s
2 Reece Ushijima Hitech GP +0.961s
3 Roman Bilinski Arden +6.733s
4 Branden Lee Oxley Chris Dittmann Racing +7.222s
5 Tom Lebbon Elite Motorsport +7.991s
6 Bryce Aron Carlin +9.215s
7 Javier Sagrera Elite Motorsport +9.696s
8 Frederick Lubin Arden +13.089s
9 Alex Fores Chris Dittmann Racing +13.834s
10 James Hedley Elite Motorsport +14.503s
11 Ayrton Simmons Chris Dittmann Racing +14.776s
12 Roberto Faria Fortec Motorsports +15.528s
13 Christian Mansell Carlin +17.236s
14 Mikkel Grundtvig Fortec Motorsports +17.888s
15 Jonathan Browne Hillspeed +20.214s
16 Eduardo Coseteng Fortec Motorsports +21.783s
17 Flynn Jackes Hillspeed +22.267s
18 Bart Horsten Hitech GP +38.529s
Ret Tommy Smith Douglas Motorsport
Ret Sebastian Alvarez Hitech GP
Ret Reema Juffali Douglas Motorsport
Fastest lap: Horsten, 1m24.259s

Championship standings
1 O’Sullivan 489   2 Simmons 352   3 Mansell 347   4 Ushijima 337   5 Faria 325   6 Horsten 298   7 Bilinski 286   8 Lebbon 268   9 Alvarez 257   10 Sagrera 255