In the round-up: Mercedes didn’t expect George Russell would recover to finish fourth after his first-lap collision with his team mate.
Mercedes did not predict fourth place after Russell’s fourth
Mercedes’ trackside engineering director Andrew Shovlin says the team thought Russell’s first-lap collision with team mate Lewis Hamilton would cost him much more dearly.
“Given that we were put right to the back after that lap one incident, the early predictions were coming in back of the points but not scoring many points,” explained Shovlin in a video published by the team. “As the race went on those predictions got better and better and ultimately were indicating that he would finish fourth place.”
Russell made much better progress through traffic than the team though was possible, said Shovlin. “Basically, he was able to overtake, he was able to get through key cars early on. Also, once he got into free air, we could see that the race pace was actually really good and that was the thing that allowed him to make up so many places. On top of that, the strategy team did a great job of re-optimising the race, trying to make the most of a bad situation, and fourth was a great reward for their efforts.”
Goethe tops day two of F3 test
FIA Formula 3’s second post-season test at Barcelona concluded on Wednesday, Campos Racing’s Oliver Goethe setting the pace.
A 1’26.675 lap from Goethe 0.359 seconds ahead of Prema’s Gabriele Mini who was second fastest, and with 0.977s covering the top 11. Trident’s Leonardo Fornaroli was third fastest, Campos’s Mari Boya was fourth and ART Grand Prix’s Laurens van Hoepen completed the top five despite bringing out red flags when he struck trouble in the middle of the morning session.
The pace was significantly slower in the afternoon, with Prema driver Dino Beganovic’s session-topping 1’28.533 lap time 1.858s off Goethe’s morning benchmark. Boya, Goethe and their team mate Sebastian Montoya were second, third and fourth fastest in the afternoon, with Jenzer Motorsport’s Charlie Wurz and Trident’s Leonardo Fornaroli the only other two drivers within a second of Beganovic’s pace. Beganovic had only been 28th fastest in the morning, while Wurz was one of the culprits behind the red flag stoppages.
Indy Nxt’s 2024 grid grows
Bryce Aron, James Roe Jnr and Nolan Siegel all announced this week that they will be racing in IndyCar’s primary support series Indy Nxt in 2024.
Siegel took two wins en route to third in the standings in his rookie season this year and will spend a second season with the HMD Motorsports team he debuted with. Roe will be going into his third season, having driven for two different teams in 2022 then settling with Andretti Autosport this year and taking his maiden podium finish. He came seventh in the 2023 standings and will remain with Andretti for next season.
Aron, meanwhile, graduates from Europe’s Formula 3-level Euroformula series, where he has has won three races and is currently fourth in the standings. The American previously raced in Britain’s GB3 series.
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