Race 2: Sato bounces back

Takuma Sato dominated the second British Formula 3 Championship round at Croft on Monday in slippery conditions to make up for his first-race collision with fellow title contender Derek Hayes

Race 2: Sato bounces back

The Japanese took full advantage of horrendously botched starts from front-row men Hayes and Anthony Davidson to control the race from start to red-flagged finish.

Poleman Hayes missed his shift to second gear, dropping his Manor Motorsport Dallara-Mugen to third behind Sato and Jamie Spence. Davidson, meanwhile, got away last after stalling.

With spots of rain falling, Sato's Carlin Motorsport Dallara-Mugen pulled away from Spence, who came under little threat from F3 rookie Hayes, who did not know how hard to push on the slippery circuit.

Eventually, on the 14th lap, Spence arrived at Clervaux just after the rain had suddenly increased in intensity. The Duma Racing Dallara-Mugen slid wide, was launched clear of the gravel trap by the kerb and plunged head on into the barriers before rolling over. Spence was unhurt and, with the race stopped just seconds later because of the worsening conditions, he even kept his second place in the results.

A delighted Sato, who extends his championship lead (regardless of the outcome of Manor Motorsport's protest into his first-race driving standards, see previous story), said: "I made a perfect start regardless of what happened to Derek and Anthony. Then I had to put the brakes on to avoid Derek. Jamie came rocketing up the inside so I had to pass Derek on the outside.

"Then I got a comfortable distance. There were spots of rain, but it lowered the track temperature and actually increased the grip. But after that the rain increased and I had to back off."

Nicolas Kiesa took a strong fourth, chased throughout by Gianmaria Bruni. The Italian said he was lining up to make a late challenge, only for the race to be stopped.

Bruce Jouanny completed the top six after a competitive weekend. He had Andre Lotterer closing, the German having made a fantastic start from 15th on the grid.

First-race winner Davidson recovered to 11th, just one place outside the points, but was dumped back to 12th on results countback (due to the red flag). "From so high to so low," he said, "but it's been a great weekend and I love driving through the field! I was completely flat on the throttle at the start but it just didn't catch. I don't know why."

Robbie Kerr took the Scholarship Class from Michael Keohane. Series leader Matt Gilmore unavoidably hit Ernani Judice at the first corner and lost two laps having a new nosecone fitted before rejoining to claim the final point for 10th place.

Takuma Sato (Carlin Motorsport Dallara-Mugen) 12 laps in 15m13.885
Jamie Spence (Duma Racing Dallara-Mugen) +4.207s
Derek Hayes (Manor Motorsport Dallara-Mugen) +5.202s
Nicolas Kiesa (RC Motorsport Dallara-Opel) +7.661s
Gianmaria Bruni (Fortec Renault Dallara-Renault) +8.245s
Bruce Jouanny (Promatecme Dallara-Mugen) +8.831s
Andre Lotterer (Jaguar Racing Dallara-Mugen) +10.792s
Matt Davies (Team Avanti Dallara-Opel) +11.713s
James Courtney (Jaguar Racing Dallara-Mugen) +12.382s
Paul Edwards (Alan Docking Racing Dallara-Mugen) +13.214s
Scholarship Class Robbie Kerr (Fred Goddard Racing Dallara-Renault)
Fastest lap Sato 1m15.136s

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Race 1: Davidson benefits from Sato-Hayes shunt
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Sato excluded from Race 1 at Croft

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