F3 Spa: Force India junior Daruvala wins incident-filled first race

Force India Formula 1 protege Jehan Daruvala took the second Formula 3 European Championship win of his career - and his first of 2018 - in an incident-filled opening race at Spa

F3 Spa: Force India junior Daruvala wins incident-filled first race

Daruvala got a slow start from pole and lost out to front-row partner Marcus Armstrong and the fast-starting Alex Palou, with pre-race championship leader Armstrong then sweeping around Palou into the lead.

But Ferrari junior Armstrong then lost the advantage to Palou at the exit of Raidillon, and Daruvala slipstreamed his way into second place.

Contact at La Source, when Nikita Troitskiy bumped into Sacha Fenestraz, left Troitskiy stranded on the outside of the turn with suspension damage, and the safety car was called out.

At the restart, Daruvala towed ahead of Palou on the Kemmel straight to take the lead.

Despite running a low-downforce single-plane rear wing, Hitech GP driver Palou could not complete a retaliation move on Daruvala's Carlin Dallara-Volkswagen over the next couple of laps, and eventually he pulled away as Palou's tyres went off.

With a lap remaining, Daruvala was over four seconds to the good, and crossed the line 3.235 seconds in front of Palou.

"I was running a bit more wing and tried to pull away in the middle sector," said Daruvala.

"He stayed pretty close but then I started pulling away as he was losing grip.

"I didn't push too much - I was saving my tyres in case the safety car came out."

Ralf Aron moved into the championship lead by finishing third, after running sixth in the early laps.

An early fight for third between Prema Powerteam-run Armstrong and impressive Hitech rookie Ben Hingeley ended when they touched at Les Combes, Armstrong getting a puncture and Hingeley needing new front wing, which sent both to the pits.

Aron passed Prema team-mate Guan Yu Zhou on the first lap after the restart for what became third, with Zhou then also suffering a puncture and retiring to the pits.

But Aron had to survive an attack from Hitech's Enaam Ahmed.

On the 13th lap of 15 they made contact on the Kemmel straight, with Ahmed sustaining right-front suspension damage that forced him to the pits.

Although the stewards investigated the incident, no action was taken.

Aron had enough breathing space over Motopark-run Red Bull Junior Dan Ticktum to take the final podium spot, despite suspecting he had picked up a puncture from his Ahmed collision.

Ticktum climbed the order from 13th on the grid, and pulled off a great move around the outside of Les Combes on Mick Schumacher to take what became fourth place.

Schumacher just held off Prema team-mate Robert Shwartzman for fifth.

Juri Vips grabbed seventh from fellow Motopark man Marino Sato on the final lap, the Estonian recovering from a clash with Jonathan Aberdein at Les Combes that resulted in Aberdein riding over his rear wheel and into retirement.

The final points places were claimed by Artem Petrov (Van Amersfoort Racing) and Fabio Scherer (Motopark).

Race one results - 15 laps

Pos Driver Team Car Gap
1 Jehan Daruvala Carlin Dallara/Volkswagen 35m29.001s
2 Alex Palou Hitech Bullfrog GP Dallara/Mercedes 3.235s
3 Ralf Aron PREMA Theodore Racing Dallara/Mercedes 11.905s
4 Mick Schumacher PREMA Theodore Racing Dallara/Mercedes 16.506s
5 Robert Shwartzman PREMA Theodore Racing Dallara/Mercedes 16.716s
6 Juri Vips Motopark Dallara/Volkswagen 17.625s
7 Marino Sato Motopark Dallara/Volkswagen 19.599s
8 Artem Petrov Van Amersfoort Racing Dallara/Mercedes 20.065s
9 Fabio Scherer Motopark Dallara/Volkswagen 21.075s
10 Keyvan Andres Van Amersfoort Racing Dallara/Mercedes 22.835s
11 Sacha Fenestraz Carlin Dallara/Volkswagen 28.572s
12 Ameya Vaidyanathan Carlin Dallara/Volkswagen 30.700s
13 Dan Ticktum Motopark Dallara/Volkswagen 32.569s
14 Sebastian Fernandez Motopark Dallara/Volkswagen 38.970s
15 Petru Florescu Fortec Motorsports Dallara/Mercedes 41.279s
16 Sophia Florsch Van Amersfoort Racing Dallara/Mercedes 43.674s
17 Julian Hanses ma-con Dallara/Volkswagen 51.854s
18 Ben Hingeley Hitech Bullfrog GP Dallara/Mercedes 1m16.389s
19 Enaam Ahmed Hitech Bullfrog GP Dallara/Mercedes 2 Laps
- Jonathan Aberdein Motopark Dallara/Volkswagen Retirement
- Guanyu Zhou PREMA Theodore Racing Dallara/Mercedes Retirement
- Ferdinand Habsburg Carlin Dallara/Volkswagen Retirement
- Marcus Armstrong PREMA Theodore Racing Dallara/Mercedes Retirement
- Nikita Troitskiy Carlin Dallara/Volkswagen Not started


shares
comments
F3 Spa: Schumacher tops second qualifying, takes first series pole

Previous article

F3 Spa: Schumacher tops second qualifying, takes first series pole

Next article

Enaam Ahmed angry with European Formula 3 stewards after Spa crash

Enaam Ahmed angry with European Formula 3 stewards after Spa crash
Load comments

About this article

Series FIA F3
Drivers Jehan Daruvala
Author Marcus Simmons
Why Correa's return is the feelgood story racing needed Plus

Why Correa's return is the feelgood story racing needed

Juan Manuel Correa has had a long road to recovery from that horrific day at Spa in 2019. ART's decision to give him his race return in FIA Formula 3 in 2021 is a victory in itself, but his determination will surely - in time - have him fighting for bigger things

FIA F3
Feb 2, 2021
Why Piastri's F3 title was better than results suggested Plus

Why Piastri's F3 title was better than results suggested

F3 rookie Oscar Piastri only just snatched the 2020 title with Prema Racing, but the setbacks he overcame to do so suggest that Renault's next Australian talent is one destined for the top

FIA F3
Jan 12, 2021
The ground-effect wonder behind a generation of F1 stars Plus

The ground-effect wonder behind a generation of F1 stars

Recently named as Autosport's greatest single-seater, Ralt's RT3 launched a plethora of superstar drivers through the early 1980s, and established the constructor as the go-to place for your single-seater weapon

FIA F3
Dec 8, 2020
The Macau GP's greatest moments Plus

The Macau GP's greatest moments

Coronavirus restrictions mean this weekend's Macau GP will have a very different feel, with the usual F3 jamboree replaced by Chinese F4. But in past years, the event has provided some seminal moments in the careers of future world champions

FIA F3
Nov 20, 2020
Rating the prospects of the 2020 F3 title contenders Plus

Rating the prospects of the 2020 F3 title contenders

With the title race finely poised ahead of the final triple-header, a category returnee who raced George Russell in his F3 days lends Autosport his thoughts on the ones to watch

FIA F3
Aug 25, 2020
Why "whirlwind" Tauranac's legacy will stand the test of time Plus

Why "whirlwind" Tauranac's legacy will stand the test of time

The passing of Ralt boss Ron Tauranac last week drew tributes from around the world, not least from the bosses of three prominent teams on whom the Australian designer made a lasting impression

FIA F3
Jul 24, 2020
The young driver Red Bull couldn't ignore Plus

The young driver Red Bull couldn't ignore

Igor Fraga has a more colourful career behind him than any other driver on the FIA Formula 3 grid, and now he's beginning to become as recognised for his talents in real racing as in the virtual world

FIA F3
Jun 21, 2020
The new F3 car that has teams purring Plus

The new F3 car that has teams purring

Dallara has improved upon its old F3 car with the new 320 for this season's Euroformula Open, ensuring that single-seater competition's 'heritage’ category can race into the future

FIA F3
Apr 14, 2020