The sixth round of the FIA Formula 3 Championship at Spa-Francorchamps in Belgium proved to be a difficult weekend for Sauber Junior Team driver Fabio…/Read
Switzerland’s Fabio Scherer celebrated the most successful weekend of his FIA Formula 3 Championship season so far by collecting valuable points in both races at the famous Monza circuit in Italy this weekend.
The Sauber Junior Team by Charouz driver finished P8 in Saturday’s Race One, before going one place better in the second race on Sunday morning, racking up six points in total.
Qualifying proved frustrating, as Fabio was forced to abandon a flying lap when the session was controversially red-flagged due to other drivers unnecessarily driving slowly around the 5.79km circuit. As a result, he lined up P20 on the grid for Saturday’s race.
“The officials red-flagged the session because they said it was too dangerous,” Fabio said. “I’ve never experienced anything as stupid as that [drivers going unnecessarily slowly] before. I was setting personal best sectors on a flying lap with no traffic when it was stopped.”
Fabio’s qualifying disappointment set the scene for a dramatic charge in an incident-packed race. The 20-year-old took his chances to overtake brilliantly, make up 12 places to finish P8.
“When you drive from P20 to P8, it needs to be considered a good race!” the Stobag-supported driver said. “However, I came away thinking that even more might have been possible if we’d had a little more pace.”
Fabio started Sunday morning’s reversed-grid encounter from pole position. The race was held in challenging conditions, with early morning rain leaving the track surface damp but drying in places.
Despite a car that struggled at times for pace, a determined Fabio maintained a podium position for the opening ten laps. However, as the race wore on and the track dried, he found himself powerless to fend off his rivals and had to be content with P7 at the chequered flag.
“We were unlucky with the weather, because in full wet conditions we were quite quick, but when the race developed it wasn’t quite wet enough to suit us. We were losing out in the corners and braking was really difficult,” he explained.
“Overall, I’m taking mixed feelings away from Monza. When we look objectively at how this weekend went compared to some of the previous ones, its positive. However, when you start a race from pole position, you really want to win it and today that was not possible. Considering the pace we had, though, I think I did the best job possible.
“Finishing twice in the points is good but there is still a lot of hard work to do in preparation for the final races in Sochi because I’m determined to end the season on a high.”
The FIA Formula 3 Championship reaches a climax at Sochi Autodrom, Russia, on 27-29 September.