Brands race 2: Sato back on track

Takuma Sato atoned for his first race starting blunder at Brands Hatch by making the best unpenalised getaway of his British Formula 3 Championship career and romping home to his seventh win of the year

Brands race 2: Sato back on track

The Carlin Motorsport Dallara-Mugen ace rocketshipped through from fourth on the grid, slamming round the outside of James Courtney, Mark Taylor and Anthony Davidson into Paddock Hill Bend and never being troubled thereafter.

As Courtney and Taylor battled, Davidson thought he saw a chance into the Druids hairpin by going around Taylor. But there was contact, pitching Davidson into a spin which effectively ended his chances.

Taylor continued untroubled to take easily the best result of his F3 career in third, but had no answer to the pace of Courtney, who likewise was left in the distance by Sato.

"It was a really good start I have to say," said Sato. "I was nervous because of the first race, but the car felt so good on the green flag lap. Fourth is actually a very good place to start at Brands because the front row is slightly uphill, so theoretically that gave me a push, and my reaction was perfect."

The only thing left for Sato to do was collect the extra point for fastest lap. Davidson, who rejoined half a lap in arrears, had set a new lap record early in the race, but Sato just nicked the verdict with four laps to go. "I felt some oversteer mid-race, so I backed off a tiny bit and then, when I had lower fuel, I could get fastest lap. Maximum points. I'm happy now!"

Once Taylor had settled down he began to draw away from Paul Edwards, who completed a good weekend by taking his second fourth place of the day.

Bruce Jouanny did a good job to hold off first race winner Derek Hayes, a slow-starting Andre Lotterer and Andy Priaulx for fifth. This group was shuffled by the goings on at Druids on lap one, in which Davidson's spin was added to by Jamie Spence being pushed around by Scholarship Class leader Robbie Kerr, who was running higher up the overall field than ever.

Once the race had settled down it was pretty processional, although Lotterer's move to take Priaulx at Paddock Hill Bend for seventh was spectacular.

Kerr ran ninth overall before being passed by Jeffrey Jones and Gianmaria Bruni, but he was well ahead of Scholarship Class runner-up Michael Keohane and stretches his series lead. Pre-Brands top dog Matt Gilmore was fourth behind Ernani Judice.

Takuma Sato (Carlin Motorsport Dallara-Mugen) 15 laps in 19m48.659s
James Courtney (Jaguar Racing Dallara-Mugen) +4.565s
Mark Taylor (Manor Motorsport Dallara-Mugen) +13.559s
Paul Edwards (Alan Docking Racing Dallara-Mugen) +17.862s
Bruce Jouanny (Promatecme Dallara-Mugen) +20.415s
Derek Hayes (Manor Motorsport Dallara-Mugen) +20.792s
Andre Lotterer (Jaguar Racing Dallara-Mugen) +21.648s
Andy Priaulx (Alan Docking Racing Dallara-Mugen) +21.966s
Jeffrey Jones (Manor Motorsport Dallara-Mugen) +24.974s
Gianmaria Bruni (Fortec Dallara-Renault) +28.490s
Sato 1m18.372s
Robbie Kerr (Fred Goddard Racing Dallara-Renault)
1 Sato 206; 2 Hayes 156; 3 Courtney 143; 4 Davidson 129; 5 Lotterer 102; 6 Priaulx 100; 7 Davies 88; 8 Bruni 87; 9 Edwards 55; 10 Kiesa 46.
1 Kerr 213; 2 Gilmore 197; 3 Keohane 158; 4 Mayall 128; 5 Doornbos 118.

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