The Räikkönen Robertson Racing F3 team left Spa-Francorchamps with mixed results this weekend, following rounds 15 and 16 of the 2008 British F3 International Series. Round 15 saw both John Martin and Atte Mustonen take solid points for the team, while a first lap incident put both drivers out of the race in round 16. Henry Arundel meanwhile battled his way through the field to 12th place having stalled on the grid in race one, and took his best finish of the year with a seventh place in race two.
As round 15 of the season got underway, Martin had a difficult start from his sixth placed grid slot and was passed by Sergio Perez off the line. Behind him, Atte Mustonen also lost out and was ninth by the end of lap one while Arundel made a lightening come back in 17th having been dead last into the first corner following a stall on the grid. Unwilling to give up his position, Martin fought his way past Perez and was back up to sixth by the end of lap two. Behind him, team mate Arundel was also on a charge, making up two places to 15th.
The racing action began to heat up on lap six, with Mustonen closing in on Invitation Class driver Daniel Campos for tenth. The duo were neck and neck through La Source on lap seven, with Sebastian Hohenthal in 12th also closing in on the feuding pair. As the cars entered Eau Rouge, they were three abreast, but Mustonen defended his position and was up to 10th when the cars crossed the line the next time round, as Clos and Hohenthal crashed out of the race.
With Clos and Hohenthal out, Arundel moved up to 12th. The race was far from over though, as Arundel came under pressure from Oliver Oakes on lap nine. Oakes was in front as the duo entered La Source, but Arundel fought back to maintain his position to the chequered flag. Martin took his best finish of the season in fifth, while Mustonen added to his points tally finishing in tenth.
After a rather processional race the day before, round 16 saw action from the start. Managing to avoid a stranded Oliver Turvey on the grid, Martin and Mustonen found themselves in a first lap battle with Walter Grubmuller, which resulted in a clash putting both Double R drivers into retirement.
The only Raikkonen Robertson car still on track, Arundel had moved up to seventh place from his 12th place grid slot at the end of lap one.
The F3 rookie was up to sixth a lap later, passing second year driver Max Chilton. The 20 yearold maintained his position around the challenging circuit, but came under pressure from Daniel Campos, who finally managed to find a way through on the final lap. Arundel went on to take his best finish of the season in seventh place. Team principal Anthony Hieatt commented, .
"Spa was a weekend of mixed results for the team. John demonstrated great pace from the outset, and drove a great race on Friday to take fifth place.
Unfortunately we weren.t able to see what John snd Atte were capable of in the second race, as a first lap incident put them bothinto retirement. This was Henry.s first visit to Spa, but he drove well and improved constantly throughout the weekend to take his best result of the season."Click here for the Official Raikkonen Robertson Racing web site - designed and built by Racecar