July 13, 2015 @ 06:12 PM

Formula Renault 3.5 Series in Austria

The Red Bull Ring saw much excitement when Formula Renault 3.5 Series’ bright young stars set tyres on the tarmac.

Last weekend, the Red Bull Ring saw much excitement when Formula Renault 3.5 Series’ bright young stars set tyres on the tarmac. Which talented driver will ultimately win the race during the round at the Red Bull Ring and who will win the honour of taking Sebastian Vettel’s RB8 for a spin?

Race 1

Qualifying one had seem Oliver Rowland top the time sheets by 0.2 seconds off second place man Marlon Stockinger from the Lotus team, Stockinger’s teammate Matthieu Vaxiviere finishes the top three.

Rowland dominated Race 1 from start to finish. He immediately started pulling a gap between his Fortac Motorsport car and DAMS pair Dean Stoneman and Nyck de Vries. Vaxiviere and Pons Racing’s Roberto Merhi completes the top five. The safety car was brought out when a trio of cars that involves Meindert van Buuren (Pons Racing), Alfonso Celis (AVF) and Sean Gelael (Jagonya Ayam with Carlin) crashed. 

Rowland had remained calm at the restart which saw him hold on to the lead and then steadily build a gap between himself and the rest of the grid. But the safety car was brought out again Roy Nissany from Tech 1 Racing stopped on the circuit.

The second restart did not went as well as the first when Rowland found himself under threat from second place man Dean Stoneman. Rowland then proceeded to set a string of fastest laps to open up an eight-second margin over his compatriot to win the race. Nyck de Vries rounded up the top three to put both DAMs cars on the podium.

Race 2

Matthiu Vaxiviere took Pole in qualifying with Roberto Merhi close behind. But Merhi was excluded from the rest of the weekend after his dangerous post-race move in Race 1 which saw race 1 winner Oliver Rowland, Nyck de Vries, Roy Nissany and Marlon Stockinger promoted to the top five of the grid.

In spite of an attacking Rowland, Vaxiviere managed to hold on to the lead. Roy Nissany managed to fight pass de Vries to claim third and Meindert van Buuren round out the top five. The first corner accidents saw Louis Deletraz (Comtec Racing) returned to the pits, while Nicholas Latifi (Arden Motorsport) and Dean Stoneman (DAMS) retiring from the race.

Rowland did not let off throughout the race as he continued to put pressure on Vaxiviere, as a result both drivers traded fastest lap times before the Vaxiviere found the pace to pull a four-second gap to win the race. Nissany had a rather lonely race as the rookie maintained his pace to take home his first ever podium finish.

Further back, Pietro Fantin from International Draco Racing muscled his way pass Nyck de Vries’ DAMs car to snatch fourth with six laps to go. Marlon Stockinger held off Strakka Racing’s Gustave Malja to come home sixth while Tom Dillmann (Jagonya Ayam with Carlin) got the better of our homeboy Jazeman Jaafar in the Fortec Motorsports car. Beitske Visser (AVF) picked up the final point after she overtook Bruno Bonifacio (International Droco Racing) on lap 19.

With Rowland finishing second, he is now 26 points clear of his closest rivals and he will also be starring in the Infiniti Red Bull Racing F1 Show behind the wheel of Formula Renault 3.5 series graduate, Sebastian Vettel’s championship winning RB8.

Jerrica Leong

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