Monza GP3: Jake Dennis leads Arden 1-2 at Monza to claim first win

Jake Dennis claimed his first GP3 victory in an Arden one-two in the Monza opener

Monza GP3: Jake Dennis leads Arden 1-2 at Monza to claim first win

Though championship leader Charles Leclerc had claimed pole, he was surprised to do so as he felt ART was not at its best this weekend and said after qualifying he would focus on protecting his title bid.

He achieved that aim despite finishing only fourth, as championship rivals Alexander Albon and Antonio Fuoco were sixth and eighth.

Dennis grabbed the lead from Leclerc with a dive into the first chicane in the early stages, with team-mate Jack Aitken also demoting the Ferrari Formula 1 junior next time around.

Leclerc was more determined in defence when Fuoco then attacked him, with the pair banging wheels in an incident race control briefly investigated before deciding no action was required.

Fuoco lost pace in the second half of the race and fell back, though he will start on reverse-grid pole on Sunday.

Jake Hughes charged through from eighth on the grid, after his penalty for colliding with Matt Parry at Spa, to claim third from Leclerc and then challenge Aitken in the closing laps.

Leclerc resisted pressure from team-mate Nirei Fukuzumi for fourth.

Albon had initially lost ground, banging wheels with fellow ART man Nyck de Vries at one point, before salvaging sixth - passing Fuoco around the outside in a tyre-smoking move into the Roggia chicane. De Vries followed him through.

Matt Parry battled up from 17th on the grid to ninth, while Arden got all three of its drivers in the points as Tatiana Calderon took 10th.

Parry's Koiranen team-mates Matevos Isaakyan and Ralph Boschung could have been in the mix for points and reverse grid pole too had Boschung not run into Isaakyan, damaging the Russian's rear wing and earning himself a penalty.

Third-row starter Kevin Jorg struggled off the line and then caused a brief safety car when his DAMS machine cut out on track, though he got going again almost immediately.

RESULTS - 22 LAPS:

Pos Driver Team Gap
1 Jake Dennis Arden International 38m06.844s
2 Jack Aitken Arden International 1.987s
3 Jake Hughes DAMS 2.532s
4 Charles Leclerc ART Grand Prix 7.139s
5 Nirei Fukuzumi ART Grand Prix 7.561s
6 Alexander Albon ART Grand Prix 8.171s
7 Nyck de Vries ART Grand Prix 8.343s
8 Antonio Fuoco Trident 16.207s
9 Matt Parry Koiranen GP 16.607s
10 Tatiana Calderon Arden International 17.003s
11 Alex Palou Campos Racing 19.202s
12 Sandy Stuvik Trident 20.444s
13 Steijn Schothorst Campos Racing 22.179s
14 Arjun Maini Jenzer Motorsport 25.076s
15 Akash Nandy Jenzer Motorsport 27.804s
16 Artur Janosz Trident 30.365s
17 Konstantin Tereschenko Campos Racing 32.963s
18 Ralph Boschung Koiranen GP 34.813s
19 Santino Ferrucci DAMS 1 Lap
- Kevin Jorg DAMS Retirement
- Matevos Isaakyan Koiranen GP Retirement
- Giuliano Alesi Trident Not started

RACE TWO STARTING GRID

Pos Driver Team
1 Antonio Fuoco Trident
2 Nyck de Vries ART Grand Prix
3 Alexander Albon ART Grand Prix
4 Nirei Fukuzumi ART Grand Prix
5 Charles Leclerc ART Grand Prix
6 Jake Hughes DAMS
7 Jack Aitken Arden International
8 Jake Dennis Arden International
9 Matt Parry Koiranen GP
10 Tatiana Calderon Arden International
11 Alex Palou Campos Racing
12 Sandy Stuvik Trident
13 Steijn Schothorst Campos Racing
14 Arjun Maini Jenzer Motorsport
15 Akash Nandy Jenzer Motorsport
16 Artur Janosz Trident
17 Konstantin Tereschenko Campos Racing
18 Ralph Boschung Koiranen GP
19 Santino Ferrucci DAMS
20 Kevin Jorg DAMS
21 Matevos Isaakyan Koiranen GP
22 Giuliano Alesi Trident

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