The outcome of the 2013 FIA Formula 3 European Championship will be decided at Hockenheim in what will be a thrilling finale. Will the winner be Raffaele Marciello or Felix Rosenqvist? Answer on Saturday or Sunday.
Thu 17.10.13, 5:05PM
Since March the budding stars in motor sport have been at it hammer and tongs in the FIA Formula 3 European Championship. From Monza to Hockenheim by way of Silverstone, Brands Hatch, the Red Bull Ring, the Norisring, the Nürburgring, Zandvoort and Vallelunga there has been no let-up in the battle, which has been an intense but sporting confrontation from beginning to end.
While Prema Powerteam has already wrapped up the teams’ championship, 27 races haven’t been enough to determine the outcome of the drivers’ title chase. Thus, the last three races will be crucial in deciding which of the two contenders will have his name on the trophy. The big prize for the winner of the 2013 FIA Formula 3 European Championship will be an F1 test with the Scuderia Ferrari.
At the moment the Ferrari Driver Academy protégé Raffaele Marciello (Prema Powerteam) has the advantage coming into the ultimate round! He has racked up 12 victories and opened up a lead of 45.5 points so the young Italian is in a strong position. If he manages to score five points more than Felix Rosenqvist in the first race on the Hockenheim circuit, the title will be his. However, as there have been so many upsets during the season he remains cautious.
“I will run with my usual concentration trying to start and remain in the lead” Marciello says. “I will obviously give 110% in a track like Hockenheim where I always go fast. I’m confident that together with my team I can do a good job and bring home the rewards we deserve. Will I pay special attention to my direct rival in the championship fight? No I won’t, my strategy is always the same: trying to always give the best and bring home victory while not caring too much about the others.”
His main threat comes from Felix Rosenqvist (kftzeile24Mücke Motorsport) who lost contact at Vallelunga after an accident in qualifying, but the Swede has not thrown in the towel and is ready to give 110 per cent right down to the wire. "The last couple of weeks have been pretty intense - but I still feel very refreshed and ready for the finale this weekend.” Rosenqvist explained. “As far as the championship is concerned, we lost a bit of ground last weekend; but, on a positive note, that means I can travel to Germany with literally nothing to lose. I will be giving it my absolute maximum in the fight for the title. I've made up more than 45 points on Raffaele on two separate occasions this year, so it's definitely not an impossible task - even though it obviously won't be easy. "
These two drivers will obviously be the centre of attention, but they won’t be the only ones who want to finish the year in a blaze of glory. Alex Lynn (Prema Powerteam) is lying third overall, and he has racked up an impressive string of six top-4 results including a win and four top-3 finishes, which have enabled him to get the better of Lucas Auer (Prema Powerteam). The Austrian has been very impressive in his first season at this level, and would like to end the year on a high note.
Luis Felipe Derani (Fortec Motorsports) also wants to round off the year with a good result, and a win would be a great reward for the young Brazilian who is still hoping the finish in the top 5. However, it won’t be easy to beat Harry Tincknell (Carlin), Jordan King (Carlin) and Tom Blomqvist (Eurointernational).
Alexander Sims (ThreeBond by T-Sport), who had a great weekend at Vallelunga where he came close to victory, will be replaced by Kevin Korjus. The aim of the winner of the 2010 Eurocup Formula Renault 2.0, still in the running for the GP3 Series title, is to prepare for the FIA Formula 3 Intercontinental Cup in the Macao Grand Prix. Daniil Kvyat (Carlin) is also retained by other obligations so Nick Cassidy will make his comeback to F3 after a good debut at the Norisring.
Two races will take place on Saturday 19th October at 11h10 and 17h05, and the final start of the 2013 season will be given on Sunday 20th October at 11h00. On Sunday evening drivers, teams, media and members of the organization will all get together to close what’s been a thrilling, successful FIA Formula 3 European Championship season in the style it deserves!