Monza European F3: Ferrari protege Marciello controls race one

Raffaele Marciello took a start-to-finish win in the opening race of the Formula 3 European Championship at Monza

Monza European F3: Ferrari protege Marciello controls race one

From third on the grid, the Ferrari protege launched his Prema Powerteam Dallara-Mercedes ahead of team-mate Lucas Auer and the Mucke Motorsport Dallara-Mercedes of Pascal Wehrlein, and controlled the race to the finish.

Wehrlein clung on to second place from Auer for half the race, but on the 10th lap of 19 the Austrian went around the DTM-bound German into the Roggia chicane.

Wehrlein then gave chase, setting fastest lap in Auer's tow, but a mistake into the Rettifilo chicane three laps from home consigned him to third.

Marciello was delighted with his win. "I started very well," he said. "I had one second to Pascal and this was good, because it was difficult for him to get a slipstream. My car was very fantastic and consistent, and it's great to win my home race."

Will Buller scythed his way through from 12th on the grid to fifth in the early stages with the ThreeBond Nissan-powered T-Sport Dallara, and with five laps to go he passed the Carlin Dallara-Volkswagen of Harry Tincknell to take fourth.

Behind them, a battle for sixth between Felix Rosenqvist and Tom Blomqvist ended with Blomqvist taking his former Swedish Formula Renault Championship rival out at the Rettifilo chicane, earning a drive-through penalty for his offence.

That promoted another big battle, between Felix Serralles and Jordan King. There were numerous changes of position, and some contact, before the Fortec Motorsport Dallara-Mercedes pilot beat the Carlin man to sixth.

Alex Lynn was closing in by the end. The Brit went down the escape road at the Rettifilo on the opening lap and had to clamber out of an enormous midfield battle before taking eighth in his Prema machine.

The top 10 was completed by Dennis van de Laar (Van Amersfoort Racing Dallara-VW) and the fourth Prema car of Eddie Cheever.

Here were numerous incidents, two of which put paid to the hopes of British drivers.

Josh Hill was forced to pit at the end of the opening lap with front-wing damage and rejoined to finish a lap down, while Nissan GT Academy starlet Jann Mardenborough was in the big midfield group, on the cusp of the top 10, when he went out with a broken wing as a result of contact with Lucas Wolf with three laps remaining.

Results - 19 laps: Pos Driver Team/Car Time/Gap 1. Raffaele Marciello Prema Dallara-Merc 33m27.878s 2. Lucas Auer Prema Dallara-Merc + 2.079s 3. Pascal Wehrlein Mucke Dallara-Merc + 5.200s 4. Will Buller T-Sport Dallara-Nissan + 13.956s 5. Harry Tincknell Carlin Dallara-VW + 15.855s 6. Felix Serralles Fortec Dallara-Merc + 23.933s 7. Jordan King Carlin Dallara-VW + 24.316s 8. Alex Lynn Prema Dallara-Merc + 27.867s 9. Dennis van de Laar Van Amersfoort Dallara-VW + 34.768s 10. Eddie Cheever Prema Dallara-Merc + 35.304s 11. Pipo Derani Fortec Dallara-Merc + 36.399s 12. Sven Muller Ma-con Dallara-VW + 45.153s 13. Tom Blomqvist Eurointernational Dallara-Merc + 55.303s 14. Sean Gelael Double R Dallara-Merc + 56.183s 15. Spike Goddard T-Sport Dallara-Nissan + 56.694s 16. Nicholas Latifi Carlin Dallara-VW + 57.796s 17. Dmitry Suranovic Fortec Dallara-Merc + 59.794s 18. Sandro Zeller Zeller Dallara-Merc + 1m00.737s 19. Tatiana Calderon Double R Dallara-Merc + 1m04.155s 20. Andre Rudersdorf Ma-con Dallara-VW + 1m31.679s 21. Michela Cerruti Ferraris Dallara-Merc + 1m33.147s 22. Antonio Giovinazzi Double R Dallara-Merc + 1 lap 23. Josh Hill Fortec Dallara-Merc + 1 lap 24. Gary Thompson Ferraris Dallara-Merc + 1 lap Retirements: Mitchell Gilbert Mucke Dallara-Merc 16 laps Jann Mardenborough Carlin Dallara-VW 16 laps Lucas Wolf URD Dallara-Merc 16 laps Felix Rosenqvist Mucke Dallara-Merc 10 laps Roy Nissany Mucke Dallara-Merc 0 laps Mans Grenhagen Van Amersfoort Dallara-VW 0 laps 
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Euro F3 Monza: Raffaele Marciello takes pole for third race

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Series FIA F3
Author Marcus Simmons
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