A totally dominant performance by Carlos Sainz jnr. in soaking wet conditions gave the Spanish Red Bull junior driver his 2nd victory of the weekend in the Carlin Motorsport Dallara Volkswagen at Monza. Felix Serralles crossed the line 16.711 seconds behind and well ahead of fellow Fortec Dallara Mercedes driver Alex Lynn. Sainz now has an 8 point lead over Serralles in the series.
“That was just a fantastic end to a great weekend,” said a wringing wet Sainz as he stepped down from the podium wet from rain and champaign. “The team was great, they gave me a great car, we all did a perfect job I think. Starting behind the safety car like that I thought would give us an advantage but I never expected it to go quite that well”
“Of course it was not easy, the car was moving around a lot especially at the beginning when I was trying to build an advantage but I had a great car under me and that always makes it easier. It seemed that there was not quite the same amount of water on the track as this morning early in the race but as you could see the lap times grew a bit later on because it was raining and the conditions got worse.”
“You really have to be watching all the time, trying to work out what is happening, you think it might just be spray on your visor but no it is raining and there is more water on the track, aquaplaning was a problem just as it was in the first race. The tyres held up very well, it was just up to me not to make any mistakes.”
Sainz made a perfect start after the safety car announced it would pull in at the end of lap one by switching off it's lights. He held back then stormed away and had a 1.145 second lead starting lap 2 chased by Serralles and Lynn.
A lap later it was 2.329 and he is making full use of the good visibility that was denied him in the reverse grid race 2 earlier in the day. Apart from Jack Harvey passing Nick McBride to take 9th the spray was keeping everyone a bit cautious even though the water was not quite as deep as race 2.
3.483 is the gap at the end of lap 3 and Sainz is a second quicker than anyone else. No changes behind but McBride was racing to recover from the error that had let Harvey past. Harvey was not going to be caught though and on lap 4 got past Harry Tincknell to take 8th.
Harvey is the only man moving forwards though as Sainz, Serralles, Lynn, Jaafar, van Asseldonk, Derani, and Fantin maintain position ahead of him. The closest battle is that for 6th with Derin, Fantin and Harvey nose to tail.
Harvey stole 7th from Pietro Fantin with a great inside move at the second Lesmo on lap 7 and set off after Pipo Derani who had taken advantage of the fight behind.
Sainz was strolling along with a 6.538 second lead after 7 laps with 23 minutes remaining from the initial 40. Serralles had 4 seconds over Lynn who in turn was 3 clear of Jazeman Jaafar. Fantin didn't complete lap 8, stopping at the Parabolica
Sainz continued to lap in the 2m 7 second bracket, reeling off very consistent laps. Lap 10 and Harvey continued the pressure on Derani but also had Tinknell close behind. Lap 13 saw Harvey and Tinknell both cut a chicane as they tried to get closer to Derani. They both lost ground to the Brazilian and Ticknell came out ahead of Harvey in their battle for 7th.
Lap 14 and Sainz is 13 seconds ahead. Looking back at the great battle mid field, Harvey has re-passed Tinknell and the pair are back on the rear light of Derani in 6th.
Lap 18 and an impressive move from Tinknell stole 7th from Harvey but in their struggle Derani had got away slightly. Tinknell was storming though, caught the Brazil and pulled exactly the same move to take 6th at the Roggia chicane on the 19th and final lap.
Cooper Tires British Formula 3 International Series
Round 6, Monza (ITA) 15/4/2012
19 laps / 68.392 miles
Provisional results International class
1 Carlos SAINZ / ESP, Carlin Dallara-Volkswagen 41m 22.078s / 99.17mph
2 Felix SERRALLES / PUR, Fortec Dallara-Mercedes +16.711s
3 Alex LYNN / GBR, Fortec Dallara-Mercedes +27.424s
4 Jazeman JAAFAR / MAS, Carlin Dallara-Volkswagen +32.083s
5 Hannes VAN ASSELDONK / NED, Fortec Dallara-Mercedes +33.891s
6 Harry TINCKNELL / GBR, Carlin Dallara-Volkswagen +38.530s
7 Pipo DERANI / BRA, Fortec Dallara-Mercedes +41.236s
8 Jack HARVEY / GBR, Carlin Dallara-Volkswagen +41.749s
9 Nick McBRIDE / AUS, T-Sport Dallara-Nissan +49.826s
10 Fahmi ILYAS / MAS, Double R Dallara-Mercedes +1m 30.064s
R Pietro FANTIN / BRA, Carlin Dallara-Volkswagen 7 laps
R Geoff UHRHANE / AUS, Double R Dallara-Mercedes 6 laps
Fastest lap Sainz 2m 06.638s / 102.34mph
Provisional championship standings
1 Sainz 74 points; 2 Serralles 66; 3 Jaafar 65; 4 Harvey 63; 5 Derani 48; =6 Fantin & Tincknell 40 etc.