Liam Lawson
© Dutch Photo Agency / Red Bull
Junior Formula Series

Lawson's F3 2nd at Monza taken away by post-race penalty

An excellent 2nd place for Liam Lawson on Sunday at Monza after 6th in Race 1 was cancelled by a post-race penalty for a mid race incident
Written by Peter Clifford
7 min readPublished on

#5 Liam Lawson (NZL – Hitech Mecachrome Dallara)

  • Qualifying: 4th – Race 1 Grid: 1st – Race 1 Result: 6th
  • Race 2 Grid top 10 in reverse order: 5th – Race 2 Result: 7th (Penalty)
  • FIA F3 Championship position: 4th – 127 points – after 16 of 18 races

#6 Dennis Hauger (NOR – Hitech Mecachrome Dallara)

  • Qualifying: 22nd – Race 1 Grid: 22nd – Race 1 Result: 12th
  • Race 2 Grid top 10 in reverse order: 12th – Race 2 Result: 15th
  • FIA F3 Championship position: 16th – 14 points – after 16 of 18 races

#24 Igor Fraga (BRA – Charouz Mecachrome Dallara)

  • Qualifying: 13th – Race 1 Grid: 7th – Race 1 Result: 24th
  • Race 2 Grid top 10 in reverse order: 24th – Race 2 Result: 17th
  • FIA F3 Championship position: 23rd – 1 point – after 16 of 18 races

#16 Jack Doohan (AUS - HWA Mecachrome Dallara)

  • Qualifying: 19th – Race 1 Grid: 18th – Race 1 Result: 17th (Penalty)
  • Race 2 Grid top 10 in reverse order: 17th – Race 2 Result: 21st
  • FIA F3 Championship position: 28th – 0 points – after 16 of 18 races
An excellent 2nd place for Liam Lawson on Sunday at Monza after 6th in Race 1 was cancelled by a post-race penalty for a mid race incident. The 18-year-old New Zealander was demoted to 7th as: 'The stewards have determined that the Hitech Grand Prix driver did not give the Trident racer the required one-car width of room during an overtake on the first corner of Lap 9.'
Fellow Red Bull Junior and Hitech teammate Dennis Hauger put in a great drive in Race 1, charging from P22 to P12 but the 17-year-old Norwegian was frustrated with 15th in Race 2. Misfortune also for Jack Doohan and Igor Fraga.
Lawson battling at the front all weekend
Lawson being demoted for a Race 2 incident was particularly galling for the Kiwi as his chances of a Race 1 win were wrecked when he was hit early by a competitor who tried an over ambitious move at Turn 1. That damaged the radiator, oil cooler and steering on Lawson's car.
“It's a shame about the damage we picked up in Race 1 as I think it could have been a very good race. We were expecting the car to come good through the race but with the damage that didn't happen. It also cost us today because with that we didn't learn what we should have yesterday for today's set-up.”
“We'd lost out with the pace at the start yesterday and that we did change for today and it was better. I thought we could win it today but though the car came to us towards the end and was really quite good, we had lost a bit too much in the middle to be able to recover completely so second was the best we could do.”
Hauger with a great Race 1 drive
“It was an up and down weekend,” admitted Hauger. “In Free Practice there was definitely more time to be had, we didn't have a slipstream either so there was more potential. In Qualifying, in the first stint we were going for a good lap but then I messed up a bit to be honest on the best lap in the last corner.”
“I was just getting a feel for it in the first stint anyway. In the second one we went alone and didn't go for a tow. Others did and my teammates did and that made it quite difficult, I lost quite a lot on the straights. It could have been better.”
“So in Race 1 I had to start quite well back. The pace wasn't too bad, not too good either but OK and I was able to make use of opportunities as they came up. Others were fighting and that gave me chances that I took.”
“So finished P12, quite close to reverse pole and it's a shame I couldn't get it but I think I had done the maximum and had made up a lot and there was still a gap to the cars in front so it was't possible.”
“Race 2, I'm not quite sure what happened to be honest. I was really going for the points, that seemed quite possible with the pace we had in Race 1 and I got off a decent start. But from there, there was no pace, struggling for grip from the beginning and in the end I just had no front at all.”
“The pace was nowhere compared to the day before, I'm not sure what happened, it didn't feel like I changed anything big but… not much to say, confusing and hard to explain. With Race 1 pace it would have been good but that wasn't the case unfortunately.”
Doohan with speed again
“It was the same story really,” explained the 17-year-old Australian HWA driver. “We had quite good pace in Practice even though I couldn't maximize the soft. Then in Quali I just caught traffic on all three push laps with the first set. Then with the second set it was the same and in the end I just had to go for it, round the outside at Ascari and the last corner to get us where we were.”
“In Race 1 I got a good start, made up some places but then the tyres went off early and I was getting vibration from all four, I though I might have a puncture or something but kept going.”
“I think I was a bit unlucky to get a penalty for restarting too early after the Safety Car. I gave the place back but I'd overtaken before the finish line so that cost me.”
“Then today another good start and made up some places but made contact, that was down to me, I should have been a bit more alongside going in. I had to pit to replace the front, then went out again a lap behind and was setting really fast sector times and catching the guys ahead but every time I passed I got a blue flag and had to give the place back. It seemed that because I was a lap behind I was not allowed to overtake.”
“So another weekend where we had pace but it didn't show in the results.”
Fraga lost out with lock up
The 21-year-old Brazilian Charouz driver again showed skill and pace but a single error cost a likely great placing and points. “Yes we were in with a chance this weekend. Qualifying went a little bit better and then there were a lot of penalties so we moved up the grid.”
“Then the start of Race 1 was OK but in the first corner I lost 1 position I think but very soon I could already recover and was running P6.”
“I was catching the Jenzers in front. Peroni was also quick behind me and as he was going to overtake me into Turn 1 and was in fact half a car in front of me, he moved a little on the brakes and I had to try and avoid him.”
“The data shows my braking point was very much the same as the lap before, actually less pressure but as soon as I hit the brakes I locked the front right. I still had the Jenzer ahead so needed to keep braking so the tyre was still locked and I went straight on.”
Igor Fraga

Igor Fraga

© Dutch Photo Agency / Red Bull

“That was not good but worse was I flat spotted the tyre badly and I couldn't keep up the pace so I dropped back a lot. It was kind of a racing situation I guess but it was very unfortunate.”
“For Race 2 I had an issue at the start, my car stalled. I got going, well behind but started to catch up. I had a good pace at the beginning but then as I was overtaking in Turn 1 there was a bit of a mess and the car in front moved across between Turn 1 and 2 and my front wing clipped and I needed to box to change the front wing.”
“At least we had the pace to race this week so that is very positive and I will continue to do my best for Mugello.”