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Race Report

2017 Formula 1 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix

Circuit: Abu Dhabi (UAE), Length 5.554 km, 24th – 26th November 2017, Rounds 15 & 16

Alessio Lorandi (I), Juan Manuel Correa (USA) and Arjun Maini (IND)


Maini on the podium at Abu Dhabi Finale

The GP3 Series met up for their eighth and final round of the season which was held in the spectacular setting of the Yas Marina Circuit in Abu Dhabi, as usual on the same bill as F1. The 2017 champion, George Russell, had been crowned at the previous race, but the remaining positions were not yet decided. Exciting racing was to be expected!

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Race One Qualifying

Friday, 24/11/17, 15.10 – 15.40, Weather: Sunny, 26°C

Free practice was run on Friday morning, and saw Arjun running well to take 9th place on the results sheet. Juan Manuel was 17th and Alessio, who had a flat tyre, was 18th.

The qualifying session was held a little later in the afternoon heat. A super lap from Arjun saw him secure 5th on the grid. Alessio was held up by traffic on his fastest lap and so ended up 10th, while Juan Manuel claimed 19th place on the grid.

Race One Grid
1st George Russell (GB) ART 1:54.751
2nd Leonardo Pulcini (I) Arden 1:55.073
3rd Niko Kari (FIN) Arden 1:55.157
5th Arjun Maini (IND) Jenzer Motorsport 1:55.466
10th Alessio Lorandi (I) Jenzer Motorsport 1:55.605
19th Juan Manuel Correa (USA) Jenzer Motorsport 1:56.597

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GP3 Series

Race One (40 Minutes)

Saturday, 25/11/17, 12.25, Weather: Sunny, 27°C

The start to the penultimate race of the season went well, and Arjun managed to move up to 4th place, while Alessio improved two places and was now 8th.Juan Manuel, who picked up a penalty in qualifying. had to start from pitlane but was already up in 18th. Then Siebert’s car broke down out on track and had to be removed, which meant the Virtual Safety Car was deployed. At the restart Arjun held 4th, but Alessio was taken by surprise by Schothorst and dropped back to 9th. However, he regained his place in the next couple of corners and put in a determined drive from then on. Juan Manuel, meanwhile, had improved to 14th. Later on Alesi had clashed with someone and the Virtual Safety Car had to be deployed again, while his car was cleared away. Alessio was in a race long battle with Boccolacci, the pair of them trading places more than once, but in the end it was Alessio who kept his nose in front to finish 6th. Juan Manuel had overtaken Aitken and was now 13th, and with two laps to go Arjun managed to close in on Pulcini and activate his DRS to pass the Italian. This meant that after a very exciting race he was rewarded with a brilliant 3rd place! Pulcini picked up a puncture and dropped back, which meant that Alessio finished a great race in a super 5th place! Juan Manuel also drove an excellent race which he finished with a great 12th place.

Hubert was handed a time penalty after the race which dropped him back to 11th and meant that Tveter inherited pole position for the second race.

Results Race One
1st Niko Kari (FIN) Arden 37:28.944  
2nd George Russell (GB) ART Gap 2.748
3rd Arjun Maini (IND) Jenzer Motorsport Gap 7.532
5th Alessio Lorandi (I) Jenzer Motorsport    
12th Juan Manuel Correa (USA) Jenzer Motorsport    
Fastest lap: Nirei Fukuzumi (JPN) in 1:57.544

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Race Two Grid
1st Ryan Tveter (USA) Trident  
2nd Dorian Boccolacci (F) Trident  
3rd Steijn Schothorst (NL) Arden  
4th Alessio Lorandi (I) Jenzer Motorsport  
6th Arjun Maini (IND) Jenzer Motorsport  
12th Juan Manuel Correa (USA) Jenzer Motorsport  

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GP3 Series

Race Two (30 Minutes)

Sunday, 26/11/17, 12.50, Weather: Sunny, 27°C

The last race of the season provided Alessio with a chance to claim a podium position. He hung on to 4th at the start, but soon came under pressure from Ticktum, which meant he had to concentrate on defending rather than attacking. Once Ticktum was through Alessio closed the gap to Schothorst quickly and was able to pressurise him. Alessio used the DRS support immediately and had it in mind to quickly follow Ticktum’s suit, but the manoeuvre was overoptimistic, and Alessio damaged his front wing on Schothorst’s car. He dropped back and made his way to the pitlane to get the part changed, and although he was able to finish the race after his stop, the possibility of a great result had completely slipped away and he finished 17th. Arjun was battling hard with Russell, and they changed places several times during the course of the race. Arjun held 7th place for a number of laps, but shortly before the end of the race Baptista shot past him, which meant Arjun took the chequered flag in 8th place. Juan Manuel had to avoid an accident on lap one which cost him several places, but he was able to fight his way back up to 13th and came home safely in that position.
After the race a number of time penalties were handed out to Ticktum, Kari and Baptista, which worked in favour of Arjun and Juan Manuel. Arjun gained a few more points for being classified 6th, and Juan Manuel was finally listed in 12th place, meaning he had finished both races just outside the top ten.

That brought an exciting 2017 GP3 Series season to an end.
Next week the team remains in Abu Dhabi where a number of new talents will get their chance to impress over the three official test days on 30th November and 1st/2nd December 2017.
The 2018 season will start in February with the first tests of the year.
We are looking forward to this!

Results Race Two
1st Dorian Boccolacci (F) Trident 27:28.145  
2nd Ryan Tveter (USA) Trident Gap 5.581
3rd Daniel Ticktum (GB) ART Gap 8.510
6th Arjun Maini (IND) Jenzer Motorsport    
12th Juan Manuel Correa (USA) Jenzer Motorsport    
17th Alessio Lorandi (I) Jenzer Motorsport    
Fastest lap: Nirei Fukuzumi (JPN) in 1:57.662

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Championship final standings after 16 races:

1st George Russell (GB), 220 points; 2nd Jack Aitken (GB), 141 points; 3rd Nirei Fukuzumi (JPN), 134 points; 4th Anthoine Hubert (F), 123 points; 5th Giuliano Alesi (F), 99 points; 6th Dorian Boccolacci (F), 93 points; 7th Alessio Lorandi (I), 92 points; 9th Arjun Maini (IND), 72 points


2017 GP3 Series

11th/14th May 2017 Formula 1 Gran Premio de Espana Catalunya (E)
6th/9th July 2017 Formula 1 Austrian Grand Prix RedBull Ring (A)
13th/16th July 2017 Formula 1 British Grand Prix Silverstone (GB)
27th/30th July 2017 Formula 1 Ing Magyar Nagydij Hungaroring (HU)
24th/27th August 2017 Formula 1 Belgian Grand Prix Spa-Francorchamps (B)
31st Aug/3rd September 2017 Formula 1 Gran Premio d’Italia Monza (I)
5th/8th October Stand alone event with FIA F2 Jerez de la Frontera (E)
23rd/26th November 2017 Formula 1 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix Abu Dhabi (UEA)


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