Results > 1st-2nd October 2016 - Donington Park GP

Smith wins the race and Armer the Championship



Simon Armer secured the 2016 Historic Formula 3 Championship title with second place in the only race of the weekend at Donington Park, with Steve Smith taking a hard-earned victory in his Chevron B15.

With Armer’s March 703 out of service following an incident at the previous meeting at Zandvoort, the championship leader was indebted to Peter Thompson for the loan of his Brabham BT21 for the final meeting of the season. Armer repaid him with pole position on Saturday morning but that was to be the only Historic F3 action on the first day of the meeting. As the scheduled lunch break at the 750 Motor Club’s championship finals weekend drew to a close, so heavy rain set in. Racing was initially delayed, and with no let-up in sight and rivers running across the circuit in places, eventually abandoned for the day, with Round 11 of the championship one of several casualties.

Fortunately Sunday was much brighter and the final round of the championship took place in near-perfect conditions. Armer went into the meeting with a six-point advantage over Leif Bosson, who started from row four in his BT28. Behind Armer and Smith on the grid, row two was empty. The Brabhams of Jon Milicevic and Zandvoort winner Ewen Sergison were both absent, with Milicevic not making it through qualifying, engine issues ,Sergison not completing the green flag lap with driveshaft failure,

When the lights went out Armer made a steady start with Smith moving around the outside of him at Redgate on the opening lap. Michael Scott (Brabham BT28) threatened Armer briefly at the end of the lap, with Smith extending is advantage in the early stages. Armer turned the tables in the second half of the race, setting fastest laps as he cut the gap to just over a second at the start of the final lap, but Smith was able to hold on. With a second place finish, and Bosson only sixth, Armer had done enough to wrap up the championship, however.

“I didn’t want any more laps, put it that way,” said Smith after being made to work hard in the closing stages. “Congratulations to my old mate Simon who has clinched the championship.”

“It has been traumatic,” admitted Armer, reflecting on the aftermath of the Zandvoort accident. “I had to get into this car for the first time yesterday and just drive it. Today was about finishing and getting the points, I was never going to go wheel-to-wheel today.”

Scott had a very slow lap mid-race that handed third position to Steve Seaman, who was up from row four of the grid in his Brabham BT21, having overtaken Leif Bosson for fourth at Redgate on lap five. Scott caught Seaman in the closing stages, but ran out of time to make the move. “I ran out of tyres towards the end,” admitted Seaman. “I couldn’t do any more.”

Bosson lost fifth place to Keith Messer (Vesey) at Redgate on the sixth lap, eventually finishing sixth. Having had to qualify his Tecno behind the safety car during the lunch break, Marcus Mussa climbed to seventh place, well clear of the only Lotus 41 in the field of Barry Sewell. Robs Lamplough (Brabham BT28) was ninth, while the final top ten position changed hands in the final lap with Geoff O’Nion (Tecno) getting the better of Julian Maynard’s Chevron B17.

Ian Sowman

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