Due to heavy rain and the extremely wet track, the race was stopped prematurely.
- Winner: Raffaele Marciello (Prema Powerteam)
- Pole position: Raffaele Marciello (Prema Powerteam)
- Temperature air / track: 7.2 °C / 8.3 °C
- Weather: overcast, rain
The Italian, who is being supported by the Ferrari Driver Academy, won from Pascal Wehrlein (kfzteile24 Mücke Motorsport) and Alex Lynn (Prema Powerteam). Due to heavy rain and the extremely wet track, the race was stopped prematurely.
The third race of the season got underway behind the safety car, the young drivers being released only after three laps. In front, Raffaele Marciello slightly pulled clear from his main rival Pascal Wehrlein, who, in turn, managed to establish a huge advantage over third-placed Alex Lynn.
Meanwhile, there was plenty of action in the midfield: Sven Müller (ma-con) collided with Roy Nissany (kfzteile24 Mücke Motorsport), which ended the race for the Israeli. After another incident with Nicholas Latifi (Carlin), Müller had to pit. Mitchell Gilbert (kfzteile24 Mücke Motorsport), André Rudersdorf (ma-con), Lucas Wolf (URD Rennsport) and Dennis van de Laar (Van Amersfoort Racing) also retired.
On lap nine, the clerk of the course stopped the race due to continuous heavy rain and the amount of standing water on the track. The order after lap eight was the basis for the race classification, only half points were awarded.
The three drivers on the podium were followed home by Lucas Auer (Prema Powerteam), Luis Felipe Derani (Fortec Motorsports), Harry Tincknell (Carlin), William Buller (ThreeBond with T-Sport), Eddie Cheever (Prema Powerteam), Formula 3 novice Jordan King (Carlin) and Tom Blomqvist (Eurointernational).
Raffaele Marciello (Prema Powerteam)
“It was a tough race, because Pascal was very quick and in these extreme conditions, making a mistake is easy. I have tried to pull a gap, which wasn’t that easy. However, my car was better than in the morning and I was able to get a little advantage as a result.”
Pascal Wehrlein (kfzteile24 Mücke Motorsport)
“It wasn’t easy, because we could hardly see a thing due to the water. I also think that stopping the race in these conditions was the right decision, because the spray was even more extreme in the midfield. Nevertheless, it is also a pity, because perhaps, I could have been in with a shot at victory. But I can also live very well with three podium finishes, it is a happy end to my spell in the FIA Formula 3 European Championship.”
Alex Lynn (Prema Powerteam)
“All in all, it was very wett and I even reckon that it was slightly worse than this morning. I also understand very well why the race was stopped, because it was indeed slightly dangerous to a certain extent. Of course, I am happy with my podium finish, but I am also happy having scored points in every race of the weekend.”
Wehrlein vs Marciello at Monzo
The FIA Formula 3 European Championship got its 2013 season onderway this weekend and entertained the spectators with three spectacular races. Raffaele Marciello (Prema Powerteam) and Pascal Wehrlein (kfzteile24 Mücke Motorsport) were the race winners of the season opener. Marciello leaves the 5.793 kilometres long Grand Prix circuit of Monza in Italy as the leader in the points’ standings.
In qualifying, Pascal Wehrlein and Raffaele Marciello already emerged as the favourites: Wehrlein claimed a pair of pole positions while Marciello secured himself the third. In the three races, the 30 young drivers were confronted with much varying weather conditions. Both in the rain on Sunday and on the try asphalt the day before, Wehrlein and Marciello were setting the pace. Wehrlein, who had his final appearance in the FIA Formula 3 European Championship at Monza before bowing out towards the DTM, had no chance in the dry against Prema driver Marciello. The German, in turn, showed his skills in the rain during the second race and won from Marciello. “Bowing out with a victory is great. I had imagined my final weekend in the FIA Formula 3 European Championship just like this,” said a buoyant Wehrlein.
In race three, Italian Marciello had his revenge for this defeat against Wehrlein and ended up winning two races. The 18-year old protégé of the Ferrari Driver Academy was really satisfied after his pair of wins. “I want to score points consistently this season, and with three podium finishes, I succeeded very well here. Now, Pascal is no longer racing in the European championship and therefore no rival in the battle for the title for me.”
Wehrlein and Marciello weren’t the only drivers making it into the limelight at Monza. Other junior drivers showed a strong performance as well. In the first race, Lucas Auer (Prema Powerteam) made it onto the podium after finishing second, while William Buller (ThreeBond with T-Sport) showed a great recovery which saw him move up from twelfth on the grid to finish fourth. Tom Blomqvist (Eurointernational) shone with third place in the rain-soaked second race, in which Josh Hill (Fortec Motorsports) finished eighth. In the third race, marred by heavy rain, Alex Lynn the driver to shine next to Marciello and Wehrlein, the Brit claiming the final podium slot.
The next round of the FIA Formula 3 European Championship takes place at Silverstone in the UK from 12 till 14 April 2013.