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Jack Harvey makes his mark with dominant British F3 win

Saturday, April 07 2012

Britain's Jack Harvey completed a dominant performance in the opening Cooper Tires British Formula 3 race at Oulton Park today (Saturday). The Carlin driver made the perfect start and proceeded to pull away from team mate Jazeman Jaafar, whilst Carlos Sainz Jr completed the podium after a late race threat from Fortec's Hannes Van Asseldonk, who failed to finish the final lap.

Harvey's start was bettered by Jaafar's, and as he challenged the leader, Harry Tincknell fell back to third at Old Hall. Harvey, however, was revelling in the conditions and had a lead of nearly three seconds by the time the field had completed lap one.

Jaafar, Tincknell and Sainz formed their own group, whilst Alex Lynn worked on wresting fifth place from Hannes Van Asseldonk. Sainz's pace picked up in the damp conditions but the Spaniard's hard work was undone when he put two wheels on the wet grass at Knickerbrook and was lucky to retain his position. Quickly regrouping, he began to light up the timing screen once more with his prodigious pace. Tincknell then ran wide on the run to Druids and had the Red Bull-liveried car right on his tail.

With Jaafar pulling away to consolidate second place, Van Asseldonk and Lynn were beginning to catch the squabbling pair ahead. Before they had a chance to strike, however, Sainz had taken full advantage of Tincknell's compromised exit at Lodge and breezed past on the finish straight.

With Sainz off to find Jaafar, Tincknell faced the onslaught of the Fortec cars. Van Asseldonk eased past at the hairpin on lap 12 and Lynn was all over the back of the recently-demoted Carlin driver. Lynn tried the inside at Druids but was unsuccessful, as Van Asseldonk, freed from traffic, lapped considerably quicker than Sainz.

As Sainz came under considerable pressure, an even more thrilling battle ensued behind between Tincknell and Lynn, with the latter trying every line possible to wrest fifth place. Nick McBride, Pipo Derani, Felix Serralles and Pietro Fantin also staged their own spectacular battle for eighth behind a lonely Fahmi Ilyas.

In an incident-filled final lap, Sainz came home in third alone behind the dominant Harvey and Jaafar, whilst Van Asseldonk left the track in his challenge for the podium. Tincknell just held on to his new fourth place at the line from a fiery Lynn, but behind Ilyas, Serralles was the big winner, taking seventh place from Fantin, Derani and McBride.

There was some consolation for Van Asseldonk, however. When the draw for the grid for race two was drawn by Harvey, twelfth place was drawn, meaning that the Dutchman will start from pole when the race starts at 13:45.

Cooper Tires British F3 Championship race one
1, Jack Harvey, GBR, Carlin, 19 Laps
2, Jazeman Jaafar, MAS, Carlin, +7.736s
3, Carlos Sainz Jr, ESP, Carlin, +11.165s
4, Harry Tincknell, GBR, Carlin, +23.070s
5, Alex Lynn, GBR, Fortec, +23.119s
6, Fahmi Ilyas, MAS, Double R, +37.052s
7, Felix Serralles, PUR, Fortec, +39.354s
8, Pietro Fantin, BRA, Carlin, +42.102s
9, Pipo Derani, BRA, Fortec, +53.058s
10. Nick McBride, AUS, ThreeBond with T-Sport, +54.727s

Tickets for the British GT/F3 Championships at Oulton Park on 6,7 & 9 April are available on the gate from £16, with free entry for children aged 12 and under. For more information, call 0843 453 9000 or click here.