Oschersleben, race 1: Paffett scores first win

Young gun Gary Paffett scored a landmark first victory in the fifth round of the German Formula 3 Championship at Oschersleben on Saturday, and in so doing became the first Briton to win a race in the series

Oschersleben, race 1: Paffett scores first win

The former BRDC McLaren Autosport Award winner started from third on the grid and managed to avoid a first corner scuffle caused by the spinning Raffaele Giammaria to slot into third place behind Pierre Kaffer and Toshihiro Kaneishi in second.

An early mistake by Kaffer, who had come through from fourth on the grid, allowed Kaneishi and Paffett to move into first and second and the pair quickly stretched out a comfortable lead from the rest of the field. Kaffer dropped back to fourth behind pole sitter Markus Winkelhock who had been delayed in the first corner melee.

Paffett pushed Kaneishi hard and bided his time behind the Opel Team BSR driver and looked as though he would have to settle for second, but the pressure tactic worked, forcing the Japanese into a spin on lap 16.

"If you get too close, you lose a bit of downforce and it's quite difficult," said Paffett, "so I was just trying to keep up as much pressure as I could and it worked in the end, because he went off. Then there was a big gap and it was just a case of not pushing too hard."

Paffett cruised home to take his maiden win with ease, some 9.335s clear of Kaneishi in second, while Winkelhock managed to take some solace from third place after losing out from pole.

Early frontrunner Pierre Kaffer held on to fourth place, despite constant pressure throughout the second half of the race from Swede Bjorn Wirdheim. Tony Schmidt rounded out the top six ahead of Joao Paulo de Oliveira, while second in the championship Frank Diefenbacher finished eighth.

Paffett starts tommorrow's (Sunday's) race from second on the grid and the reigning British F3 Scholarship champion is definitely set for more of the same.

"I'm just really pleased and we're looking really good for tomorrow," he said. "We're starting from second on the grid and maybe I'll get a better start. But we know we can run the same pace as the frontrunners, so..."

Watch this space.


Gary Paffett, Rosberg Dallara F301-Renault, 22 laps
Toshihiro Kaneishi, BSR Dallara F301-Opel, +9.3s
Markus Winkelhock, ADDC Dallara F300-Opel, +10.5s
Pierre Kaffer, Team Kolles Dallara F301-Mugen, +14.5s
Bjorn Wirdheim, Prema Powerteam Dallara F301-Opel, +14.9s
Tony Schmidt, GM Dallara F301-Toyota, 16.8s
Joao Paulo de Oliveira, Swiss Tony Racing Dallara F399-Opel, 20.3s
Frank Diefenbacher, Team BSR Dallara F301-Opel, 21.1s
Bernhard Auinger, Team BSR Dallara F399-Opel, 25.4s
Nicols Stelandre, JB Motorsport Dallara F399-Opel, 25.6s


Kaneishi 56
Mucke 50
Kaffer 47
Diefenbacher 46
Winkelhock 46
Gary Paffett 39

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