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F3: Stenshorne takes maiden victory in Melbourne Sprint Race

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MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA - MARCH 23: Race winner Martinius Stenshorne of Norway and Hitech Pulse-Eight

Hitech Pulse-Eight rookie Martinius Stenshorne scored his first ever Formula 3 victory as he survived a late Safety Car restart and pressure from PREMA Racing’s Arvid Lindblad to secure top spot.

Starting in second, Stenshorne maintained the position for the first few laps before overtaking ART Grand Prix pole-sitter Laurens Van Hoepen for the lead on Lap 5.

READ MORE: Fornaroli edges out Mini to take pole in Melbourne

The Hitech driver then extended his lead out front to two and a half seconds at the halfway stage of the 20-lap race. But he saw that gap quickly closed down once Lindblad overtook Van Hoepen for P2, with the British driver within DRS range by Lap 14.

However, his challenge for the lead was brought to a halt when the Safety Car came out on track following a collision between Van Amersfoort Racing’s home favourite Tommy Smith and PHM AIX Racing’s Tasanapol Inthraphuvasak at Turn 1.

But once the action got underway with three laps to go, Stenshorne was able to keep Lindblad at bay, with the Red Bull Academy prospect forced to settle for P2, while Van Hoepen took the final spot on the podium.

READ MORE: Hauger takes maiden F2 pole in red flag-affected qualifying in Melbourne

Elsewhere, Sunday’s Feature Race pole-sitter Leonardo Fornaroli narrowly missed out on a points finish after the Trident driver took the chequered flag in 11th.

For a full and in-depth report on the FIA Formula 3 Sprint Race, head over to the official website here.

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