Armstrong wins Sochi race one, Shwartzman wraps up F3 title

Ferrari Formula 1 junior Robert Shwartzman won the FIA Formula 3 title with second in race one at Sochi, while his Prema Racing and Ferrari team-mate Marcus Armstrong took victory

Armstrong wins Sochi race one, Shwartzman wraps up F3 title

Armstrong made a strong getaway from third to get a run on polesitter Shwartzman, the former taking the lead at Turn 2, while Jehan Daruvala - who needed to win to keep his title hopes alive - fell back to fourth at the start and then fifth when he was passed by the charging Leonardo Pulcini in the early stages.

Rain complicated matters and while it wasn't strong enough to benefit from a wet tyre, it did mean multiple drivers crashed and marred the first quarter of the race with virtual and full safety car periods.

Just before halfway following the full safety car, Niko Kari reeled in Armstrong and made his move to take the lead around the outside at Turn 13. Armstrong got back ahead one lap later at Turn 2 but locked up, falling back to third.

That gave Shwartzman second and the strong tow awarded by following the leader, and he made the most of it to claim the lead at Turn 2 with seven tours to go, and two laps later he cleared DRS range to Kari.

However it wasn't over as Armstrong passed Kari and then honed in on his rival, Shwartzman. A late lunge at Turn 2 on the last lap robbed his team-mate Shwartzman of a win in front of his home crowd, but at least the title went Shwartzman's way to avoid any blushes.

He was congratulated after the race by Ferrari team boss Mattia Binotto.

Why Leclerc isn't Ferrari's only 2019 sensation

Second would have guaranteed Shwartzman the title regardless of the result of his only title rival Daruvala, but the latter could only finish fifth and over eight seconds adrift of his team-mates in a disappointing display.

Prema sealed the race with a 1-2 as it added the drivers' title to the teams' championship in an incredible year for the Italian squad, which hadn't competed in the GP3 championship from which the new F3 car was taken and adapted.

Kari's third was his equal-best result of the year, the Finn outside of the top 10 in the points during his fourth year at this level.

Red Bull's Juri Vips took fourth on the road with a late move on Hitech Grand Prix team-mate Pulcini, but a 10 second penalty for punting ART Grand Prix driver Christian Lundgaard demoted him to eighth.

Behind Pulcini and Daruvala Pedro Piquet joined his Trident team-mate Kari in the top six, ahead of HWA's Jake Hughes and Vips.

Raoul Hyman took his first points of the year for the Sauber Junior Team, with MP Motorsport's Richard Verschoor rounding out the top 10.

Of the series debutantes, Ralf Schumacher's son David took 22nd after he was punted into a spin half way through the race in his first F3 appearance for Campos Racing.

Jenzer's 'Charles' Leong crashed at Turn 2 to bring out the full safety car in the early stages.

Race result

Pos Driver Team Laps Gap
1 Marcus Armstrong Prema Racing 20 42m35.319s
2 Robert Shwartzman Prema Racing 20 1.077s
3 Niko Kari Trident 20 4.911s
4 Leonardo Pulcini Hitech GP 20 6.007s
5 Jehan Daruvala Prema Racing 20 8.349s
6 Pedro Piquet Trident 20 9.479s
7 Jake Hughes HWA 20 11.422s
8 Juri Vips Hitech GP 20 14.020s
9 Raoul Hyman Charouz 20 15.501s
10 Richard Verschoor MP Motorsport 20 21.576s
11 Max Fewtrell ART Grand Prix 20 22.461s
12 Yuki Tsunoda Jenzer Motorsport 20 25.807s
13 Yifei Ye Hitech GP 20 26.051s
14 Christian Lundgaard ART Grand Prix 20 27.950s
15 Logan Sargeant Carlin 20 30.158s
16 Sebastian Fernandez Campos Racing 20 31.083s
17 Simo Laaksonen MP Motorsport 20 35.981s
18 Liam Lawson MP Motorsport 20 37.545s
19 Keyvan Andres HWA 20 39.851s
20 Teppei Natori Carlin 20 42.861s
21 Alessio Deledda Campos Racing 20 43.912s
22 David Schumacher Campos Racing 20 59.897s
23 Devlin Defrancesco Trident 20 1m03.815s
24 Andreas Estner Jenzer Motorsport 20 1m11.999s
25 Felipe Drugovich Carlin 20 1m12.808s
- Fabio Scherer Charouz 9 Retirement
- Charles Leong Jenzer Motorsport 3 Retirement
- Bent Viscaal HWA 1 Retirement
- Lirim Zendeli Charouz 0 Not started
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