With five minutes to go in the 25-minute qualifying session for the FIA Historic Formula 3 European Cup at Zandvoort, Davide Leone hit the top of the timesheets to claim pole for the first of two races to decide who is the best historic F3 driver in Europe. The young Italian’s March 783 pipped Dane Michael Ringström’s Martini MK42 by a mere 0.058 seconds, while in the dying seconds Monegasque Frédéric Lajoux jumped up to snatch third on the grid with his March 793.
In a topsy-turvy session, the top-six swapped places continuously, Patrick Andriessen ending up fourth in his Ralt RT3, ahead of the March 783’s of Valerio Leone and Frédéric Rouvier. After five minutes, Davide Leone was the first to hit the ground running, but he was soon pipped by Ringström, after which the two swapped provisional pole two more times, Leone ending up quickest. Andriessen and Rouvier both had spells in the top-three before Lajoux pushed them down the order right at the end.
Behind the top six, a two-second gap then opened up to Robert Moores whose Chevron B38 took seventh ahead of David Thorburn’s Ralt RT3. Daniel Hornung’s Toyota RT3 and Gianluigi Candiani’s Chevron B38 rounded out the top-ten.
Thorburn’s appearance in qualifying was remarkable, as he along with Keith White’s Ralt RT1 was involved in a massive crash out of the final corner in the morning’s free practice session. The two cars ended up in the outside barriers of the Arie Luyendijkbocht, with serious suspension damage as a result. However, Thornburn and his mechanics worked miracles to get the car ready for qualifying, while White’s car will be repaired in time for the two races.
Michael Ringström – in his first race weekend of the year – had set the pace during free practice, leading both Leones, son ahead of father, with Andriessen in fourth ahead of Thorburn, Rouvier and White.