Mortara wins first Norisring race

Edoardo Mortara took a lights-to-flag victory in the first Formula 3 Euro Series race of the weekend at the Norisring on Saturday

Mortara wins first Norisring race

The Signature driver extended his championship lead after sustaining race-long pressure from Valtteri Bottas, and even survived a late-race restart to move 16 points clear in the title race.

Bottas had been starting to drop back shortly before the safety car period in the closing stages - which was triggered by a three-car accident at the back of the field involving Mathias Laine, Daniel Juncadella and Nicolas Marroc.

But the Finn was unable to attack Mortara on the restart and instead lost out to the second Signature car of Marco Wittmann, who snatched second place at the first corner.

Bottas held on for third ahead of his ART team-mate Alexander Sims, who had an eventful race. The Briton lost out to Roberto Merhi early on, but then set about chasing Wittmann once he was clear of the Spaniard.

He then spun at Turn 4 in the middle of the race but held his position, only to lose it again to Merhi on the restart. Sims then took fourth back one more time on the penultimate lap and held on through a wheel-banging moment between the two on the final lap to keep the place.

Laine recovered from his part in the Juncadella/Marroc clash to take eighth place and pole position for race two, ahead of Laurens Vanthoor. The Belgian had been running comfortably in the points, but dropped back when he was given a drive-through penalty for setting a fastest sector time under yellow flags.

Pos Driver Team Car Time/Gap 1. Edoardo Mortara Signature D/V 30m27.998s 2. Marco Wittmann Signature D/V + 1.068s 3. Valtteri Bottas ART D/M + 1.666s 4. Alexander Sims ART D/M + 2.680s 5. Roberto Merhi Mucke D/M + 3.663s 6. Carlos Munoz Mucke D/M + 4.905s 7. Antonio Felix da Costa Motopark D/V + 5.456s 8. Matias Laine Motopark D/V + 7.892s 9. Laurens Vanthoor Signature D/V + 10.730s Retirements: Nicolas Marroc Prema D/M 26 laps Daniel Juncadella Prema D/M 26 laps Jim Pla ART D/M 11 laps 
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Mortara clinches Norisring pole

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