F3: Arthur Leclerc secures first win of 2022 in Silverstone Feature Race
Arthur Leclerc scrapped for his first win of the 2022 Formula 3 season, seeing off home favourites Zak O’Sullivan and Ollie Bearman for victory in the Feature Race.
The Monegasque picked up PREMA Racing’s first win of the year to bring himself back into Championship contention. He had already passed O’Sullivan but was forced to give back the lead due to the move coming just as the Safety Car was deployed. Leclerc re-passed pole-sitter O’Sullivan shortly afterwards and held off the threats from behind to move up to second in the Drivers’ Championship.
Carlin driver O’Sullivan was then locked in a battle with Bearman for the closing laps. The PREMA man had been lining up a move in the closing laps and attempted a pass on the final lap at Stowe. O’Sullivan drove defensive in the final few corners and the pair were side-by-side across the line, with just 0.051s separating them in O’Sullivan’s favour.
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Further back, Caio Collet collected points in fourth while Sprint Race victor Isack Hadjar lifted himself to third in the Championship with points for fifth. The Frenchman fought through from P9 on the grid with some impressive overtakes on his rivals, including fellow Red Bull junior Jak Crawford. The American had been battling in the top five but slipped back after slight contact with Hadjar in the middle phase of the race. He recovered and fought back from eighth to finish sixth.
Championship leader Victor Martins fought to finish seventh, making several aggressive moves along the way. Jonny Edgar’s return from health issues was rewarded with some well-deserved points and P8. David Vidales and Reece Ushijima were ninth and 10th.
F3 action returns next weekend at the Red Bull Ring in Spielberg, Austria – while Arthur Leclerc’s big brother Charles will see if he can make it two Leclerc victories in one day when the British Grand Prix kicks off later today at 1500 local time.