Victor Martins driving in Formula 3 on the Circuit Barcelona-Catalunya

Martins reclaims Formula 3 championship lead with Barcelona feature race win

Formula 3

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Victor Martins led every lap of the Formula 3 feature race in Barcelona, taking back the title lead he lost by retiring from Saturday’s sprint race.

Roman Stanek had clinched pole during a tense qualifying session, with former championship leader Victor Martins alongside him on the front row. Martins had been dominant in the first two rounds but a mechanical failure had pushed him back in the standings during yesterday’s sprint race.

Stanek got a good start, cutting across Martins to defend on the inside of turn one but Martins swept to the outside and past the Trident driver to confidently take the lead by turn two, despite having dipped a tyre onto the grass getting off the grid. Isack Hadjar, who started fourth, was also able to pass third-placed Alexander Smolyar while Jak Crawford, starting ninth, got a very good start to move up to seventh.

Rafael Villagomez’ race ended on lap three, skidding front-wing-first into the barrier in turn 12 after contact with Kush Maini and prompting a lap four Safety Car period.

The race restarted on lap seven, Martins keeping the lead while Crawford pulled an early-lap move on Caio Collet to take sixth. Kaylen Frederick lost out badly at the restart, losing places to both Crawford and Collet to be forced down to eighth.

On lap 11, Brad Benavides’ Carlin also met the wall, going straight into the barrier between turns one and two, prompting another Safety Car period. The race restarted on lap 15 and Arthur Leclerc and yesterday’s sprint race winner David Vidales clashed into turn one while fighting for tenth. Vidales went off-track and fell down the order while Leclerc managed to hold on to 12th, before passing Saucy through the same section on lap 16.

Two Campos cars touched into turn four, with Hunter Yeany ending up with front wing damage and being forced to pit while Josep Maria Marti went into the gravel but was able to continue, albeit from the absolute rear of the pack. Yeany was subsequently issued a five-second time penalty for being responsible for the contact, already running in last place following his pitting for repairs.

Leclerc was issued a five-second time penalty on lap 19 for the earlier contact with Vidales. Leclerc, possibly unaware of this, then passed Correa for tenth into turn one after running wide over the grass near the pit exit while Correa defended aggressively down the start-finish straight. The incident was placed under investigation by the stewards who will conduct an inquiry after the race.

Correa took the place back, however, feeding Leclerc back to Gregoire Saucy behind with the two going side-by-side through the entire first sector while battling over for eleventh.

Ido Cohen and Kush Maini had a coming together on the back straight on the last lap, Maini’s front wing folding under his car but somehow avoiding the tyres.

Martins took the chequered flag cleanly, Stanek and Hadjar following behind the ART to complete the podium. The result, combined with Leclerc not scoring, puts Martins back in the lead of the championship ahead of the next round at Silverstone, in July.

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Formula 3 Spain race two results

PositionCarDriverTeam
17Victor MartinsART
22Roman StanekTrident
318Isack HadjarHitech
411Alexander SmolyarMP
56Oliver BearmanPrema
65Jak CrawfordPrema
710Caio ColletMP
829Franco ColapintoHWA
917Kaylen FrederickHitech
109Juan Manuel CorreaART
118Gregoire SaucyART
1225William AlataloJenzer
133Zane MaloneyTrident
144Arthur LeclercPrema
151Oliver RasmussenTrident
1615Lirim ZendeliCharouz
1723Ido CohenJenzer
1816Francesco PizziCharouz
1919Nazim AzmanHitech
2031Reece UshijimaHWA
2122Pepe MartiCampos
2224Federico MalvestitiJenzer
2328Enzo TrulliCarlin
2414Laszlo TothCharouz
2512Kush MainiMP
2621Hunter YeanyCampos
2726Zak O’SullivanCarlin
2820David VidalesCampos
2927Brad BenavidesCarlin
3030Rafael VillagomezHWA

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Author information

Hazel Southwell
Hazel is a motorsport and automotive journalist with a particular interest in hybrid systems, electrification, batteries and new fuel technologies....

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3 comments on “Martins reclaims Formula 3 championship lead with Barcelona feature race win”

  1. Correa took the place back, however, feeding Leclerc back to Gregoire Saucy

    Actually Leclerc slowed down and let Correa through at the chicane. Technically his move on the grass was off the track and I guess it was Prema pre-empting a call from the stewards, but it was still weird as Leclerc had clearly been forced off by a late move by Correa so not sure what the thinking was there.

    1. They did not get the memo, Niels is not the race director this weekend.

    2. He was going to lose the position due to his penalty anyway, they might have wanted to avoid the chance of penalty points.

      By the way, Leclerc’s penalty? I don’t see it at all. Leclerc sticks to the inside through turn 1, Vidales turns into him and forces wheel-to-wheel contact (which is really obvious in Vidales’ onboard), which makes Leclerc lose the car and correct into Vidales, sending both off-track. Looking at the incident I really can’t see what Leclerc could have done differently to avoid the contact, he was already on the kerb.

      And now he’s been given a penalty for erratic driving for the overtake on Correa. Do the stewards have a beef with him or something?

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