A five-car Carlin team will take on rivals from Fortec and Double R this weekend
With half the season complete, the highly competitive 2013 Cooper Tires British Formula 3 International Series returns to the UK this weekend (10/11 August) for three 30-minute races at historic Brands Hatch GP Circuit in Kent.
Following races at Silverstone and Spa-Francorchamps in Belgium, Fortec Motorsports’ Will Buller, has a solid lead of 21 points as he arrives back on home tarmac.
“Obviously every weekend is important, but Brands Hatch will be critical for me to make sure I’m heading to the Nurburgring in the best position possible. I’ve not been in such a strong position in the F3 series for several years, but I know what I have to do to win. We got good points at Spa, I couldn’t have asked for much more, but I’m aiming to leave Brands in a stronger position that I left Belgium.”
The County Down racer will be looking to defend from his two main title rivals, Jordan King and Antonio Giovinazzi. The two rookies are having a strong debut year in Formula 3 and, like Buller, have each taken a pair of wins from the first six races. Both drivers continue to grow in stature and arrive back in the UK brimming confidence after strong weekends at the home to the Belgian Grand Prix, Spa-Francorchamps.
This seasons other podium visitors are Jann Mardenborough, Sean Gelael and Felipe Guimaraes, all of whom endured difficult weekends at Spa-Francorchamps, GT Academy winner Jann surviving a scary clash with Carlin team-mate Nicholas Latifi at Eau Rouge in the first race.
Multiple series champions, Carlin arrive at Brands Hatch with two new drivers in its ranks. Joining regulars, King, Mardenborough and Latifi are Chinese racer, Peter Li Zhi Cong and the very familiar face of 2012 British F3 runner-up and Malaysian star, Jazeman Jaafar. Both drivers are making one-off appearances this weekend, with Li Zhi Cong testing the water ahead of a potential full campaign in the New Year.
Another title is up for grabs this year, that is the all-important National Class for non-FIA spec machines. Leading the way after a ‘perfect’ weekend at Spa was Chinese driver Sun Zheng, but the CF Racing man will have a swarm of West-Tec cars to contend with this weekend on a circuit he has never driven at before.
“We’re prepared for this weekend, but I haven’t driven there before so it will be a new challenge. We did well at Spa, I think we can do well again there (at Brands Hatch).”
Joining New Zealander Chris Vlok at West-Tec are the experienced duo of British racer Cameron Twynham and Emirati driver, Ed Jones. With Zheng now 44 points ahead of Jones in the standings, it will require a huge effort from the West-Tec driver to reel in his Chinese counterpart.
Track action gets underway on Saturday with qualifying at 11:15 and the first race of the weekend in the afternoon at 14:55. Sunday features two races, the first of which begins at 11:00, the final race of the weekend closes the meeting at 16:50.
Finally, a minute’s silence will be held on Sunday morning ahead of race two of the weekend to remember Jeremy Lord, the former British F3 Championship co-ordinator and head of British Formula 3 teams group FOTA, who passed away in June after a brief battle with cancer.
Cooper Tires British F3 International Series – Brands Hatch
Brands Hatch GP Circuit, Fawkham, Kent, UK
2.613-mile, 9-turn race circuit,
August 10th – August 11th, 2013
Provisional Series Standings after Round 2 of 4:
International Class: 1 William Buller (Fortec) 96pts; 2 King (Carlin) 75; 3 Giovinazzi (Double R) 73; 4 Gelael (Double R) 55; 5 Calderon (Double R) 47; 6 Guimaraes (Fortec) 45; 7 Mardenborough (Carlin) 40; 8 Latifi (Carlin) 37.
National Class: 1 Sun Zheng (CF Racing) 96pts; 2 Ed Jones (West-Tec) 64; 3 Jordan Oon (West-Tec) 45; 4 Chris Vlok (West-Tec) 43; 5 Cameron Twynham (West-Tec) 38; 6 Roberto La Rocca (West-Tec) 33.