Austrian Walter Grubmüller converted his sixth place grid position into a sixth place finish in the second British Formula 3 International Series race at Bucharest on Sunday. His young team-mate Max Chilton, who started just ahead of him, made an impressive start to go into the first corner fourth. However a lap eight collision with early series leader Sergio Perez caused damage to his car which required a trip to the pits for repairs although he collected a point for tenth place. The qualifying session this morning allowed the pair to repeat their strong form in Friday’s free practice and Saturday’s opening round. Running third for much of the session, 17 year-old Max dropped to fifth in the dying minutes as others went marginally quicker on the final lap.
For Grubmüller, a repeat of his performance in session one enabled him to post the sixth quickest time, although the Austrian admitted to being unable to find a clear track around the narrow streets of Romania.
In the race, Max made a superb start to pass first race winner Brendon Hartley off the line, but Walter alongside him on the third row lost four places as he bogged down, dropping him down the order. On the second lap Walter had gained a position to take ninth while Max and John Martin were coming under pressure from a recovering Hartley.
The trio entered the second chicane side-by-side, forcing Max to take to the slip road which allowed Hartley through. As Max and Martin headed into the first corner, Martin dived up the inside, demoting Max to fifth ahead of Perez.
For four laps BRDC Superstar Max and Perez ran nose to tail and on lap eight, the Mexican eventually found a way past. However the battle ended at the first corner as Max ran into the back of Perez under braking, pushing him into a spin and damaging his own front wing. The following Ricardo Teixeira had nowhere to go and slammed into the stationery car of Perez forcing the safety car out, the three-lap delay allowing Max to pit for a replacement nosecone.
The youngster was given a stop-go penalty for his part in the incident, which he served a lap later, but he continued to the flag and picked up the final championship point for tenth International runner.
The incident elevated Walter to seventh where he stayed for five laps chasing down the Ultimate Motorsport duo Esteban Guerrieri and Michael Devaney. Five laps from the finish, Martin retired from the race moving Walter up the order to record his second successive points scoring finish and moving him the championship points table.
Results of Race Two – 20 laps
1. Jaime Alguersuari Carlin Motorsport Dallara F308 Mercedes HWA 30:43.1232. Oliver Turvey Carlin Motorsport Dallara F308 Mercedes HWA 30:43.7653. Brendon Hartley Carlin Motorsport Dallara F308 Mercedes HWA 30:44.2444. Esteban Guerrieri Ultimate Motorsport Mygale M-08F3 Mercedes HWA 30:53.2365. Michael Devaney Ultimate Motorsport Mygale M-08F3 Mercedes HWA 30:55.3566. Walter Grubmüller Hitech Racing Dallara F308 Mercedes HWA 30:56.01410. Max Chilton Hitech Racing Dallara F308 Mercedes HWA 31:38.057