Lando heads driver rankings after three rostrums including two wins on Zandvoort début
Scintillating performances from Lando Norris on his Zandvoort race début this weekend (19-20 Aug) have once more moved him clear in the FIA Formula 3 European Championship. The British teenager recaptured the lead courtesy of two dominant, unchallenged wins plus a third-place in his Carlin prepared Dallara-Volkswagen in the latest races in the Netherlands.
The McLaren-Honda Young Driver had begun the weekend 18-points behind Maximilian Günther (D) but now enjoys an 11-points advantage over the German. Norris was in dazzling form in qualifying too, claiming pole-position for each of the three 33mins plus one-lap races over the weekend
Lando, however, was one of nine drivers given a drop of two grid positions for today’s Race 2 by race officials for yellow warning flag infringements. All three races at the 2.68-mile North Sea coastal track were staged in sunshine but windy weather conditions with Lando making an excellent start in Saturday’s Race 1. An accident at the first corner brought out the Safety Car for 10mins with Norris retaining the lead at the re-start. He completed the first flying lap with a phenomenal 1.2secs lead and continued to set a searing pace, extending his advantage to 8.9secs at the chequered flag in what was a “master class” demonstration. He also set a new F3 lap record – on the final tour to underline his dominance – 0.158secs faster than his qualifying time the previous day.
The final race this afternoon saw Norris start from his seventh “pole” of the season having now achieved a remarkable 14 front row starts in the 21 races run to date and back ahead in the championship standings after placing a solid third in a processional Race 2 earlier in the day. Another good start at the green light was the foundation to securing win number seven of the season – his 15th top-three podium result – a 6.6secs victory along with another fastest race lap being achieved in Race 3. The eighth event of this season’s Euro F3 Series, featuring rounds 22, 23 & 24, is staged at the Nürburgring on 9-10 September. Lando recorded pole-positions, a race win and a fastest lap at the German venue in Formula Renault last year.
Lando Norris (GB): Born: Bristol, England. Aged 17.
“It’s great to be back leading the championship but there are still nine races remaining and a lot of points up for grabs. My Zandvoort début has been pretty successful with three podium finishes including two wins – Carlin did a fantastic job this weekend. Getting pole for Race 1 in Friday evening’s session was cool although I was a little surprised. The track was quite slippery in places and the car was sliding but I guess everyone else was experiencing the same problem. Zandvoort is a difficult track to overtake on so starting from ‘pole’ was a bonus. My re-start after the Safety Car wasn't great and I needed to fend off Joel [Eriksson] and flat-spotted my front right tyre after locking-up at Tarzan but after that I was able to extend my advantage with each lap. Getting a penalty for Race 2 wasn’t ideal and a little unlucky as the sector [of the track] I was in at the time went from yellow to green so we were unfortunate to get penalised. I was reasonably happy with third in the race. Back on ‘pole’ for Race 3, I made another good start – which is another pleasing aspect of the weekend – and my pace was good throughout."