Places five, two and three made Marco Wittmann (Germany) the quickest Volkswagen driver at the Formula 3 Euro Series season opener held at Le Castellet. The 2010 “vice champion” will travel to Hockenheim (29 April–1 May), the second out of a total of nine race weekends, ranking in fourth place of the standings.
The other drivers “powered by Volkswagen” scored fewer points. Wittmann’s Signature team colleague Laurens Vanthoor (Belgium) set his top mark of the weekend in fifth place at the third race. The rookies in the French team, Carlos Muñoz (Columbia) and Daniel Abt (Germany, achieved fifth and ninth place. Unlike their rivals, the Volkswagen drivers had difficulties making optimal use of the performance of the new tires prescribed for the series over the whole racing distance.
For Team Motopark Academy the first race weekend also marked the beginning of a year of learning. For the four drivers Jimmy Eriksson (Sweden), Kimiya Sato (Japan), Gianmarco Raimondo (Canada) and Kuba Giermaziak (Poland) the Formula 3 Euro Series is still new territory. Jimmy Eriksson and Kimiya Sato as the best Motopark Academy drivers managed to make their debut with a sixth-place finish.
Kris Nissen, Volkswagen Motorsport Director:
“We clinched two podium places at the season opener, but our expectations here had been higher than that. We’re going to analyze the unsatisfactory results and work hard in the next few weeks to be in contention for victory at Hockenheim.”
#1 – Marco Wittmann (Germany) – Volkswagen Dallara F308 – Team Signature
Qualifying: 2nd place – race 1: 5th place – race 2: 2nd place – race 3: 3rd place
“For me, it’s been a good start to the season. I clinched two podium places and was the best Volkswagen driver. The first race was promising. Although I had to start from the pit lane due to a technical problem I was among the quickest drivers in the field and finished fifth. Unfortunately, in the last race I wasn’t as strong as I’d been on Saturday and my tyres were degrading too heavily towards the end. We’ve still got to work on our performance in qualifying and in the race because the Prema Team is currently a step ahead of us.”
#2 – Laurens Vanthoor (Belgium) – Volkswagen Dallara F309 – Team Signature
Qualifying: 3rd place – race 1: 8th place – race 2: 7th place – race 3: 5th place
“Unfortunately, the season opener didn’t go the way I’d been hoping it would. In qualifying I was highly satisfied with my third place. In the race, however, I had problems with the tires. I concentrated on getting them to last for the whole distance. We’ve got four days of testing before the next round at Hockenheim and we want to make optimum use of them.”
- Volkswagen Motorsport