Russell 7th in FIA Formula 3 World Cup after Macau Pole
Hitech GP driver George Russell made his debut at the historic Macau Grand Prix for the 63rd running of the event, competing to win the FIA F3 World Cup.
Russell was the quickest of the Hitech GP drivers in qualifying for round 13 with the sixth fastest time but this became fifth on the grid for the opening race, as a result of an engine change penalty for Callum Illott.
Making a superb start to the race, Russell leapt into the top four but due to being on the outside line into the notorious Grundig hairpin the Briton had to tuck back into fifth. Just a few laps later, another incident elevated him to third and although nudged back to fourth at the second re-start he remained there to the finish and took the chequered flag on lap 38 just 0.7 seconds shy of the podium – before being moved up into third place post-race.
A difficult second qualifying saw Russell line up 6th on the grid race 2 and in 9th position for race 3.
A safety car interrupted race two saw the field twice bunch up on the short and unique track. Russell was baulked by a rival driver, costing them both time, meaning Russell finished 9th at the flag.
In the final race, delayed due to an electrical problem with the lighting gantry, the race began behind the Safety Car. When racing proper got underway Russell moved up to 7th. Embroiled in a battle with Joel Eriksson, Russell went for a move at final corner, that resulted in contact and in retirement on the spot for the Hitech driver, ending his weekend early.
George Russell “We struggled all weekend with straight-line speed and didn’t have the best qualifying."
"I personally had a poor race in race one, but we still managed to come home in third but race two was poor and we still had problems with speed. In the final race, the incident was unfortunate and just added to a very tough weekend. We just want to move on now for the rest of the season.”
Report: Hitech GP
Images: Wafeproject (Davide Pastanella) & Thomas Suer