In qualifying for the 25th season race of the FIA Fórmula 3 European Championship, Max Verstappen, 1:37s036, came out on top and claimed pole position on a rain-soaked track. The 16-year-old Dutchman, who was appointed a member of the Red Bull Junior Team only a few days ago, completed the 3.629 kilometres long Nürburgring sprint circuit 0s649 seconds faster than second-placed Edward Jones, 1:37s685. Santino Ferrucci, 1:38s079, claimed third place, his best classification in a FIA Fórmula European Championship qualifying to date. The youngest driver in the field was 0s074 seconds faster than Lotus Fórmula 1 junior driver Esteban Ocon, 1:38s153, who had to make do with fourth place.
Max Verstappen dominated the entire first qualifying and eventually claimed first place. Edward Jones only moved up into second place in the final seconds of the session. Santino Ferrucci also set his personal fastest time in the closing stages and moved up to third place. As a result, Esteban Ocon, the FIA Fórmula 3 European Championship points’ leader, dropped back from second to fourth place just before the end of the session. Antonio Fuoco and Lucas Auer, also lost two positions in the closing stages. They ended up fifth and sixth respectively.
Seventh place behind Austrian driver Auer went to Italian Antonio Giovinazzi, who scored his maiden FIA Fórmula 3 European Championship race win at the Red Bull Ring a fortnight earlier. His team-mate Tom Blomqvist was classified eighth from Roy Nissany and Felix Rosenqvist, (Mücke Motorsport, 1:38s735).
Max Verstappen, (Van Amersfoort Racing): “My qualifying was quite good, but it wasn’t too difficult. I like the Nürburgring and I really like to drive here. On top of that, my car was perfect, the only thing I had to do is drive it without any accidents. Claiming pole position in my first qualifying as a Red Bull Junior Team member is a great feeling”.
Photos: FIA F3 Euro Series