10. Kevin Magnussen
Slightly tongue-in-cheek this one, but the Euro Series field lacked a bit of depth this year with only 12 drivers completing a full season. Jan's son turned up for one weekend and managed to win a reversed-grid race in comfortable fashion, so he's worthy of a mention. He was fortunate that no one could pass second-placed Nicolas Marroc around Valencia, but he still cleared off into the distance.
9. Carlos Munoz
The rookie suffered, like Merhi, from Mucke dropping the ball this year, so he didn't have a solid platform to work from as he learned the ropes. But he showed steady improvement as the year went on, and was a more frequent points scorer in the final few rounds. He was on course to cap things off with a race two victory at Oschersleben, where he led for almost the whole race before throwing it off the road with three laps to go.
In his second year, the Mercedes-backed driver should have been a thorn in the side of the title contenders. But a threat never materialized, and he still lacked the cool head that had been missing in his first season. Mucke didn't have a great year, but Merhi admits that he didn't achieve what he should have in F3. The raw speed is clearly there, and he did his reputation some good with cameo appearances in GP3 that brought the quality of that field into question.
Motopark had VW power, but overall its package was no match for Signature. Da Costa's three wins came in consecutive reversed grid races, but that at least proved that he had the consistency to get into the points on a regular basis. In the end he almost tired of Sunday success, and was determined to achieve something meaningful in the first race of a weekend. He steadily improved as the year went on, and then notched up a race one podium at Oschersleben to satisfy his desire.
The Belgian was a Euro Series first-timer, but this was his third year in F3. He'd joined Signature for Macau in 2009 and looked promising, so there were high hopes for this year. With that in mind, and the equipment at his disposal, he didn't stand out enough against the other rookies. He admitted mid-season that his confidence was shot, but a break over the summer helped him get back on track. His best chance of a win came at the Nurburgring, where he beat Mortara off the line but then wasn't forceful enough at the first corner.
The Spaniard was the surprise polesitter for the season opener, but he possessed the classic rookie trait of lacking the consistency to back up his impressive pace. He often fluffed his starts which cost him a lot of points over the course of the season but he was at least genuinely quick. He settled down a bit more towards the end of the season and started to string some results together, and closed out the season with a maiden victory in the finale. He then spun his car doing a 'stoppie' at the finish when his battery died.
The former McLaren AUTOSPORT BRDC Award winner looked fired-up at the start of the year, and bagged a win at Paul Ricard to fire a warning shot to Signature. But after a disastrous Hockenheim weekend where he crashed out of race one, he never quite got to grips with ART's set-up (he's not the first). His main troubles came in qualifying, which meant he was always left with too much ground to make up in the races. When you need to regularly overtake in Formula 3, you know you're in trouble.
After a rookie season with Mucke that even Wittmann described as "totally s**t", he rediscovered his frontrunning pace from his FBMW days this year. He pushed Mortara to the flag on several occasions to keep the championship leader on his toes, but he just lacked that little something extra to ever get the jump on the ex-GP2 man. Second in the points seemed assured until he faded late in the season as ART fought back, but he just held on. In the end, just one win for the season will go down as a bit of a disappointment.
In his second year at ART, the Finn was supposed to kick on and follow the template set by the two previous champions, Nico Hulkenberg and Jules Bianchi. But Signature made a much bigger step forward than ART over the winter, and Bottas stumbled out of the blocks. Once he had accepted that the title was out of reach he found his form, and his dominant win at Oschersleben by over 20 seconds was a highlight. But it was too little, too late to snatch second in the points from Marco Wittmann.
The series returnee had to win the title this year if he was to have any chance of keeping his career alive beyond 2010. As it turned out, he delivered with ease. His experience paid dividends as he never looked flustered all season, and his mature approach stood out a mile in comparison with the youngsters that are still working their way up the motorsport ladder. He gave everyone a glimmer of hope when he only qualified fifth for the season-opener, and then took that hope away by cruising to victory.
For a full analysis of the 2010 Formula 3 Euro Series season, including interviews with champion Edoardo Mortara and the ART team, read this week's AUTOSPORT magazine, available in digital form here.
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