A brilliant overtaking move in the final race of the year secured Enaam Ahmed’s 13th victory of the season, while Jordan Cane earlier secured his third win of the year after a dramatic second encounter, with James Pull and Ben Hingeley securing spots in the championship top three.
Enaam Ahmed and Jordan Cane were the winners on a dramatic final day of the 2017 BRDC British F3 Championship season at Donington Park today (Sunday).
Cane took victory in the second race of the weekend this morning, benefiting from a last lap collision to scoop his third win of the season, while Ahmed’s triumph in race three was courtesy of a late braking move on team mate Cameron Das, as he ended his title winning season in style. Meanwhile, Carlin’s James Pull and Fortec’s Ben Hingeley claimed spots in the championship top three.
Jordan Cane secured his third victory of the season in a dramatic second race of the weekend at Donington Park. Fortec’s Nicolai Kjaergaard had led the race from pole throughout, but was wiped out at Redgate on the final lap by an attacking Callan O’Keeffe.
Chase Owen secured his first podium of the year with second place, while James Pull cemented second place in the championship with third.
Cameron Das was fourth while race one winner Ben Hingeley was fifth. Champion Enaam Ahmed was sixth, ahead of Manuel Maldonado, with Guilherme Samaia, Alex Quinn and Pavan Ravishankar completing the top-10.
Kjaergaard started from pole position after yesterday’s eighth place finish and made a good start to lead away on the first lap, rebuking an early attack from O’Keeffe. As the field filtered through the Craner Curves and the Old Hairpin, there was contact between Jeremy Wahome and Jamie Chadwick, with the pair spinning onto the grass but continuing.
Kjaergaard and O’Keeffe held position throughout the race, with the gap at around half a second, and O’Keeffe constantly applying pressure and looking to find a way past at either Melbourne or Goddards hairpins lap after lap. With a strong defence up front, the top-five runners of Kjaergaard, O’Keeffe, Cane, Owen and Pull were lapping almost as one, with the quintet separated by less than two seconds.
Starting the last lap, the lead pair were separated by just 0.223s and O’Keeffe made a move at Redgate, but succeeded in only nudging the race-long leader into the gravel and out of the race while damaging his own car and falling back through the order. It was cruel fortune for Kjaergaard, who had defended magnificently throughout the contest, and looked destined for not only his first podium, but his first win too.
The controversy allowed Cane to squeeze into the lead with just a handful of corners remaining, with Owen following through into second. Pull made his move on O’Keeffe for third at the Fogarty Esses, with O’Keeffe running across the grass and allowing Das through too, while Hingeley also found his way past before the chequered flag, with O’Keeffe retiring to the pit lane and was unclassified.
The result guaranteed Pull second place in the championship standings, and left Hingeley and Das to squabble for third in the final race.
The top-three were presented with their trophies on the podium by BRDC member Seb Morris, while Cane was also the recipient of the Raymond Mays Salver from the Donington Park Racing Association Club.
Carlin’s Enaam Ahmed surged to his 13th win of the year in the final race of the season at Donington Park, with a sensational overtaking move on Cameron Das.
Das had led from pole for the majority of the encounter, but champion Ahmed pulled off the brave move from a long way back at the Melbourne Hairpin on lap seven to end his season in style. Jordan Cane finished second, just 0.773s behind Ahmed with Alex Quinn scoring a sensational podium on his first ever BRDC British F3 weekend.
Ben Hingeley was fourth and secured third place in the championship standings as a result, with championship runner-up James Pull completing his year with fifth.
Chase Owen rounded out a strong weekend for Hillspeed with Cliff Dempsey Racing with sixth place ahead of Jamie Chadwick, while Nicolai Kjaergaard, Manuel Maldonado and Pavan Ravishankar completed the final top-10 of the season.
Das made a good start from pole to lead down to Redgate on the opening lap, resisting the challenge of Ahmed at the first corner. The American maintained a lead of around 0.6 seconds in the early stages, stretching his advantage to over a second by lap four and looked on course to claim his second win of the year and move into third in the championship standings.
But Ahmed began to eat into the advantage, bringing it down to 0.7 seconds on lap six and 0.4 seconds a lap later. Determined to end his season with panache, Ahmed launched a brave move up the inside of Das from a long way back at the Melbourne hairpin to surge into the lead.
The drama wasn’t over, with Cane then sweeping around the outside of Das at the Old Hairpin moments later to move into second. Somewhere in all the drama, Das picked up front wing damage and was forced to pit to make repairs, promoting newcomer Quinn to the podium on his first weekend, with Das falling a lap behind and finished 13th, meaning he finished fifth in the championship behind Lanan Racing’s Toby Sowery.
Das’s calamity meant Hingeley’s strong drive to fourth from sixth on the grid netted him third in the championship standings, 12 points clear of Sowery.
The top-three drivers were presented with their trophies on the podium by BTCC star Matt Neal. Das meanwhile set the fastest race lap of the weekend and secured the Sunoco Fastest Driver of the Weekend Award.
Ahmed commented: “I really wanted to end the year with a win so when I got close to Cameron I just threw it in and it stuck. We didn’t make any contact, I just about managed to stop the car. It was a really good move and ended with a win.
“I just want to say a massive thanks to everyone in the team at Carlin who gave me a really good car all year and now we can go and celebrate a little bit.
“I tried on the first lap and then once he (Das) passed me I thought I wasn’t going to be able to catch him but I was so determined and I gritted my teeth to catch him and I didn’t want to let him get away. I caught him bit by bit by bit and I got a really good run through the chicane, and I just threw it up the inside and it just about stuck.
“It’s been a phenomenal year and now I need to focus on what I’m going to do next. It’s going to be an even tougher challenge, moving up the ladder is always going to be tough so now it’s all about getting ready for that.”
As well as being officially crowned champion, Ahmed has also secured the Jack Cavill Pole Position Cup for the most amount of pole positions throughout the season (eight poles), while his Carlin team also claimed the David Poole-Warren Team Pole Position Cup.
BRDC British Formula 3 – Donington Park – race two top-10:
1. Jordan Cane, Douglas Motorsport, 12 laps
2. Chase Owen, Hillspeed with Cliff Dempsey Racing, +1.088s
3. James Pull, Carlin, +2.793s
4. Cameron Das, Carlin, +3.125s
5. Ben Hingeley, Fortec Motorsports, +6.752s
6. Enaam Ahmed, Carlin, +7.300s
7. Manuel Maldonado, Fortec Motorsports, +9.006s
8. Guilherme Samaia, Double R Racing, +11.388s
9. Alex Quinn, Lanan Racing, +12.625s
10. Pavan Ravishankar, Double R Racing, +17.438s
For full results, please click here.
BRDC British Formula 3 – Donington Park – Race three top-10
1. Enaam Ahmed, Carlin, 12 laps
2. Jordan Cane, Douglas Motorsport, +0.773s
3. Alex Quinn, Lanan Racing, +4.979s
4. Ben Hingeley, Fortec Motorsports, +6.204s
5. James Pull, Carlin, +6.923s
6. Chase Owen, Hillspeed with Cliff Dempsey Racing +7.494s
7. Jamie Chadwick, Double R Racing +8.943s
8. Nicolai Kjaergaard, Fortec Motorsports, +12.356s
9. Manuel Maldonado, Fortec Motorsports +14.450s
10. Pavan Ravishankar, Double R Racing +17.640s
For full results, please click here.
BRDC British F3 Championship – final standings:
1. Enaam Ahmed, Carlin, 654pts
2. James Pull, Carlin, 490pts
3. Ben Hingeley, Fortec Motorsports, 444pts
4. Toby Sowery, Carlin, 432pts
5. Cameron Das, Carlin, 425pts
6. Callan O’Keeffe, Douglas Motorsport, 373pts
7. Chase Owen, Hillspeed with Cliff Dempsey Racing, 302pts
8. Jordan Cane, Douglas Motorsport, 288pts
9. Jamie Chadwick, Double R Racing, 264pts
10. Nicolai Kjaergaard, Fortec Motorsports, 247pts
For full standings, please click here.