Hockenheim European F3: Max Verstappen takes maiden F3 win
|By Marcus Simmons||Sunday, May 4th 2014, 14:17 GMT|
Max Verstappen led all the way to take his first win in the Formula 3 European Championship in the final race of the weekend at Hockenheim.
The 16-year-old Dutchman became the youngest driver ever to win a race in the series in just his sixth weekend in car racing, after four 'warm-up' events in the Florida Winter Series earlier this year.
The win for Verstappen's Dallara-Volkswagen was also the first for the Dutch Van Amersfoort Racing team in European F3.
Verstappen built up a 1.6-second advantage on the opening lap from Esteban Ocon, but after two laps the race went under the safety car owing to early incidents, one of which eliminated fastest qualifier Tom Blomqvist, who had started 11th due to an engine-change penalty.
Ocon kept the gap at around a second for most of the race after the restart, but in turn he had to be wary of the hovering Antonio Fuoco, his team-mate in the Prema Powerteam Dallara-Mercedes squad.
Fuoco reversed a difficult weekend, inheriting a podium spot after Felix Rosenqvist's troubled season continued when he pulled off the track on the sixth lap with an engine problem.
This moved Antonio Giovinazzi up to fourth, but the Italian could not fend off Lucas Auer, who speared down the inside into the Mercedes Arena with five laps remaining. Jake Dennis shadowed the pair for most of the race to take sixth place.
Jordan King showed great overtaking skill from 19th on the grid. He made up three places within a couple of corners after the safety car and finished seventh.
A spate of drive-through penalties for track-limits offences affected, most significantly, Ed Jones and Mitch Gilbert, who were both running in the points.
As those drivers went through the pitlane, that elevated Sean Gelael to eighth, only for the Indonesian to have to stop to replace a front wing damaged in the early stages.
Up to eighth, therefore, came Roy Nissany, with Gustavo Menezes and Riccardo Agostini completing the points scorers.
Results - 22 laps: Pos Driver Car Time/Gap 1. Max Verstappen Van Amersfoort Dallara-VW 35m44.690s 2. Esteban Ocon Prema Dallara-Merc +0.860s 3. Antonio Fuoco Prema Dallara-Merc +1.777s 4. Lucas Auer Mucke Dallara-Merc +6.141s 5. Antonio Giovinazzi Carlin Dallara-VW +6.842s 6. Jake Dennis Carlin Dallara-VW +7.608s 7. Jordan King Carlin Dallara-VW +11.840s 8. Roy Nissany Mucke Dallara-Merc +25.411s 9. Gustavo Menezes Van Amersfoort Dallara-VW +26.429s 10. Riccardo Agostini Eurointernational Dallara-Merc +29.114s 11. Sandro Zeller Jo Zeller Dallara-Merc +31.388s 12. Spike Goddard T-Sport Dallara-NBE +31.920s 13. Dennis van de Laar Prema Dallara-Merc +33.068s 14. Mitchell Gilbert Fortec Dallara-Merc +34.771s 15. Ed Jones Carlin Dallara-VW +37.417s 16. Jules Szymkowiak Van Amersfoort Dallara-VW +43.406s 17. Hector Hurst West-Tec Dallara-Merc +46.997s 18. Tatiana Calderon Jo Zeller Dallara-Merc +49.364s 19. John Bryant-Meisner Fortec Dallara-Merc +50.264s 20. Alexander Toril T-Sport Dallara-NBE +52.330s 21. Michele Beretta Eurointernational Dallara-Merc +1m02.206s 22. Sean Gelael Carlin Dallara-VW +1m06.593s Retirements/not classified Nicholas Latifi Prema Dallara-Merc 12 laps Felix Rosenqvist Mucke Dallara-Merc 5 laps Felipe Guimaraes Double R Dallara-Merc 5 laps Tom Blomqvist Carlin Dallara-VW 1 lap Felix Serralles West-Tec Dallara-Merc 1 lap