Esteban Ocon said it before he arrived at the Moscow Raceway: it was going to be his weekend. With three pole positions and three victories the Frenchman had a perfect score.
Sun 13.07.14, 5:05PM
After setting his second pole position Esteban Ocon (Prema Powerteam) made a perfect start to race 2 unlike his closest rivals Antonio Fuoco (Prema Powerteam) and Tom Blomqvist (Jagonya Ayam with Carlin). The young Frenchman took advantage of the situation and opened up a gap after a few corners. He then pushed hard to make the break right from the start.
Thus he clinched victory in race 2 on the first lap. “When I saw that the others didn’t make as good a start as I did I said to myself that I had to drive home my advantage,” explained the Lotus F1 Team Junior driver. “After that it was just a question of controlling the race, in particular the tyres. With a good car, a good team and a good team-mate like Antonio Fuoco behind me, it was much easier.”
Behind Ocon the battle for second place was more indecisive. The group in hot pursuit of the championship leader lost Max Verstappen (Van Amersfoort Racing) after a few laps due to an alternator problem. Throughout the race Fuoco stayed in front of Blomqvist who was followed by Lucas Auer (kfzteile24 Mücke Motorsport) and Jordan King (Carlin). The Ferrari Driver Academy protégé held on to second till the flag, while Blomqvist was happy to be back in the top 3 after nine races without a podium finish.
Tom Blomqvist was on the front row alongside pole sitter Esteban Ocon in race 3, so it looked like he had a great opportunity. However, he ruined his chances by jumping the start and was given a drive-through penalty. Esteban Ocon led the race from Max Verstappen and Antonio Fuoco.
It looked like it was all over bar the shouting when the safety car was deployed after a collision between Lucas Auer and Jordan King who were at it hammer and tongs for fifth place. The race was restarted for a lap and Verstappen went for broke, but Ocon took the chequered flag in first place in front of the Dutchman and Fuoco. Jake Dennis (Carlin) and Felix Rosenqvist (kfzteile24 Mücke Motorsport) completed the top 5.
“Winning three races this weekend wasn’t my aim. What I wanted to do was to score as many points as possible,” explained Ocon. “Everything went off well and then that final lap was a bit strange. It’s always tricky restarting for a lap. Max launched a daring attack: it was pretty close and finally I won – so much the better! Like the Hungaroring this circuit suits my driving style. That‘s certainly the reason why it’s been such a great weekend.”
Esteban Ocon leaves Russia with a lead of 116 over points over Verstappen in the FIA Formula 3 European Championship overall classification. Lucas Auer is third in front of Tom Blomqvist and Antonio Fuoco. The next round will take place in Austria on the Red Bull Ring in early August.