Aussie teen wins on British F3 debut

Christian Mansell

Christian Mansell has picked up a race win in his first weekend in the British Formula 3 Championship.

Mansell took out the third and final race of the season-opening event at Brands Hatch, from a start of seventh in the reverse grid affair.

The teenager from Newcastle jumped into the lead by the time he reached the first corner after a slow getaway from Max Marzorati caused the pack to scatter.

Two Safety Car periods meant that barely any genuine racing took place until the latter restart transpired with seven minutes remaining.

Mansell gapped the field and took the chequered flag 1.991s clear in his Carlin entry.

Having qualified 13th for each of the first two races before finishes of eighth and then 10th in those encounters, he now sits fourth in the championship, 28 points behind pace-setting team-mate Zak O’Sullivan.

“Honestly I’m buzzing,” said Mansell shortly after Race 3.

“It’s been about 10 minutes since I got out the car and I’m just still so happy about this.

“After what I gave the boys on Saturday, I mucked up qualifying for myself, and they really deserve this. I’m so proud to be representing Carlin and everyone in the team, and I’m just so, so happy to be here.

“The start was just absolutely nuts. Either everyone was caught napping or I just got a blinder.

“I’m not sure, I don’t even know how to explain it, it was just awesome.”

Compatriot Bart Horsten had made a stronger start to the weekend but is only 10th in the championship after a spectacular Race 2 incident.

The West Australian qualified fifth for Race 1 and third for Race 2, going on to finish fourth in the former.

At the start of the latter, he went three-wide with Ayrton Simmons and O’Sullivan into the first corner.

O’Sullivan dropped behind but Horsten tried to take the lead off Race 1 winner Simmons around the outside at Druids, only for contact to put the Briton’s car on top of his Hitech GP entry.

Simmons’ car eventually fell off and ended up in the barriers, while Horsten retreated to the pits and a DNF.

O’Sullivan went on to win Race 2 before Horsten drove from 15th to eighth in Race 3.

Rounds 4, 5, and 6 take place at Silverstone on June 26-27.

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