Monza European F3: Pascal Wehrlein wins dramatic rain-soaked race two
|By Marcus Simmons||Sunday, March 24th 2013, 10:37 GMT|
Pascal Wehrlein claimed victory in a dramatic second Formula 3 European Championship race at Monza, which started under the safety car on a streaming wet track and finished in the same manner due to an enormous accident.
Wehrlein was pushing to build a gap on the opening lap under green-flag conditions, but his Mucke Motorsport Dallara-Mercedes ran wide into the gravel at Lesmo 1, allowing Saturday winner Raffaele Marciello to take the lead in his Prema Powerteam Dallara-Mercedes.
Marciello lacked the pace of Wehrlein, who claimed fastest lap as he caught the Italian. On the 11th lap, Marciello was baulked at the Lesmos by Spike Goddard, who had recovered after spinning, and Wehrlein was able to make a clean move into the Ascari chicane.
At the beginning of the next lap there was a big shunt at the Rettifilo chicane.
Mans Grenhagen, lying in ninth place, hit the back of Jordan King and took off, landing on the car of Will Buller in an accident that eliminated all three cars with substantial damage. Fortunately, the three drivers emerged relatively unscathed.
Wehrlein then reeled off two further laps under the safety car to take the win from Marciello, who was not particularly bothered by Goddard's actions as he knows the German is contesting only this weekend in F3 before joining the DTM.
"The conditions were very hard," said Wehrlein. "We had never driven here in the rain so it was difficult for the drivers who raced in the Euro Series last year, whereas the guys from the British championship raced here in the wet.
"I was pushing for a gap on the first lap and made a mistake, but I was quick and could follow Raffaele. He was blocked and I put a move on him."
Marciello's Prema team-mate Lucas Auer, who started third, suffered a red-face moment when he lost control behind the safety car on the run into Rettifilo and deranged his right-rear suspension against the barriers.
That promoted Tom Blomqvist to third, a position the EuroInternational Dallara-Mercedes driver maintained in the race as he fell ever further behind the leading duo.
Felix Rosenqvist got his first points on the board in the second Mucke car, passing Briton Harry Tincknell's Carlin Dallara-Volkswagen for fourth place on the ninth lap, with the Prema machine of Alex Lynn chasing them home in sixth.
The big crash elevated Felix Serralles to seventh as he led a Fortec Motorsport trio comprising Josh Hill and Pipo Derani, who were lifted into the points by the shunt. Derani was shown a black-and-orange flag for an inoperative rear light, but did not pit and was penalised 10 seconds after the race.
Sven Muller (Ma-con Motorsport Dallara-VW) and Dennis van de Laar (Van Amersfoort Racing Dallara-VW) rounded out the points scorers as a consequence.
The other Briton in the race, Carlin's Jann Mardenborough, finished just behind the scorers in 11th place.
Results - 14 laps: Pos Driver Team/Car Time/Gap 1. Pascal Wehrlein Mucke Dallara-Merc 37m18.470s 2. Raffaelle Marciello Prema Dallara-Merc + 2.569s 3. Tom Blomqvist Eurointernational Dallara-Merc + 3.018s 4. Felix Rosenqvist Mucke Dallara-Merc + 5.160s 5. Harry Tincknell Carlin Dallara-VW + 6.964s 6. Alex Lynn Prema Dallara-Merc + 7.888s 7. Felix Serralles Fortec Dallara-Merc + 8.804s 8. Josh Hill Fortec Dallara-Merc + 9.279s 9. Sven Muller Ma-con Dallara-VW + 10.584s 10. Dennis van de Laar Van Amersfoort Dallara-VW + 11.095s 11. Jann Mardenborough Carlin Dallara-VW + 12.842s 12. Antonio Giovinazzi Double R Dallara-Merc + 13.273s 13. Eddie Cheever Prema Dallara-Merc + 15.346s 14. Andre Rudersdorf Ma-con Dallara-VW + 15.752s 15. Nicholas Latifi Carlin Dallara-VW + 16.496s 16. Sean Gelael Double R Dallara-Merc + 17.106s 17. Roy Nissany Mucke Dallara-Merc + 17.747s 18. Pipo Derani* Fortec Dallara-Merc + 18.140s 19. Lucas Wolf URD Dallara-Merc + 18.791s 20. Gary Thompson Ferraris Dallara-Merc + 20.600s 21. Sandro Zeller Zeller Dallara-Merc + 21.510s 22. Dmitry Suranovich Fortec Dallara-Merc + 22.014s 23. Tatiana Calderon Double R Dallara-Merc + 24.581s 24. Spike Goddard T-Sport Dallara-Nissan + 1 lap Retirements: Will Buller T-Sport Dallara-Nissan 11 laps Jordan King Carlin Dallara-VW 11 laps Mans Grenhagen Van Amersfoort Dallara-VW 11 laps Mitchell Gilbert Mucke Dallara-Merc 11 laps Michela Cerruti Ferraris Dallara-Merc 8 laps Lucas Auer Prema Dallara-Merc 3 laps
* 10-second penalty for inoperative rear light