With his sixth victory of the season, Esteban Ocon, (Prema Powerteam), made his comeback on the FIA Fórmula 3 European Championship winner’s podium. The 17-year-old Lotus Fórmula 1 junior driver won the first-ever FIA Fórmula 3 European Championship race at the 3.931 kilometres long Moscow Raceway from Jordan King, (Carlin), and Max Verstappen, (Van Amersfoort Racing). With his race win, the Frenchman extended his lead in the drivers’ standings; he is now 84 points clear of 16-year-old Dutchman Max Verstappen.
Esteban Ocon benefited from his pole position and remained in the lead after the start. He gradually built up a lead of up to two seconds from his main rival in the race, Jordan King. After 24 laps, Ocon took the chequered flag as the winner of the race. Jordan King crossed the finish line in second place, confirming his good form that he already showed recently with his pair of podium finishes at the Norisring in Nuremberg.
Max Verstappen, who won the last six FIA Fórmula 3 European Championship races at Spa-Francorchamps and the Norisring, slotted into fourth place after the start, but already overtook Tom Blomqvist, (Jagonya Ayam with Carlin), on the second lap and subsequently tried to reduce the gap to King. Verstappen had Blomqvist right behind him, the Brit being able to keep up with the Dutchman’s speed. However, in the remainder of the race, the two didn’t succeed in challenging King’s second place and had to make do with third and fourth place respectively.
Lucas Auer, (Mücke Motorsport), Antonio Fuoco, (Prema Powerteam), Nicholas Latifi, (Prema Powerteam), Felix Rosenqvist, (Mücke Motorsport), Felix Serralles, (Team West-Tec F3), and Gustavo Menezes, (Van Amersfoort Racing), were classified in fifth to tenth place and thus also added to their respective points’ tally.
Esteban Ocon, (Prema Powerteam): “Both pole position and the start, which I really did very well, were the key to success. Probably, my start was the best I made so far this year. I reckon that I used my tyres a little too much in the opening stages, because I got slower towards the end. Nevertheless, it was enough to bring victory home”.
Jordan King, (Carlin): “In the opening stages, I wanted to follow Esteban and I probably slightly overdid it with my tyres, too. Just like Esteban, I wasn’t able to drive as fast as our rivals Max Verstappen and Tom Blomqvist towards the end either. Second place was all I could do in this race, because I never was close enough to Esteban to mount an attack”.
Max Verstappen, (Van Amersfoort Racing): “My start of the race wasn’t perfect, but I had a good first and second lap and I was able to overtake Tom Blomqvist at an early stage already. Towards the middle of the race, I wasn’t really quick and keeping up the pace proved slightly difficult, but the car ran very well again on the last eight laps, which allowed me to close up to the front runners”.