Results > 17th-18th March 2018 - Goodwood

Milicevic warms up a cold day

Milicevic masters the winter

Derek Bell Cup:

Historic Formula 3

Goodwood 17/18 March 2018

Arctic weather and a covering of snow on race day morning hit the 76th Goodwood Members’ Meeting, but the 1-litre Formula 3 cars still played a prominent part in the race programme as Jon Milicevic swept to a classy victory.

With temperatures barely above freezing, the 28-strong pack qualified on a damp and slippery track on Saturday and it was Milicevic (Brabham BT21) who set the pace from Andrew Hibberd’s BT18. Further back, the gorgeous ex-John Miles Lotus 41X made its return to the track after 48 years away in the capable hands of Enrico Spaggiari. Fresh from a total restoration, the car had spent nearly half a century hidden away in Italy.

Overnight snow put Sunday’s programme in doubt but after the track was salted, racing went ahead as planned and the Derek Bell Cup was the second race of the day. Understandably, many drivers elected not to risk their cars in the conditions and some were reluctant to run on a track covered in salt. The run-off areas were white with snow as the remaining runners lined up on the grid.

Unsurprisingly, Milicevic was a resounding winner although he was headed off the line by the fast-starting Christoph Widmer (BT18A). However, Widmer spun under braking for Lavant and rejoined at the tail of the field. That helped Milicevic establish a lead as he mastered the treacherous conditions to edge away while Thierry Gallo (Tecno) and Simon Armer (March 703) battled all the way to the flag for second.

There was another good battle for fourth between Ian Bankhurst (Alexis Mk8) and Marcus Mussa (Tecno). Paul Kite (Brabham BT21) was a mid-race spinner at Lavant and Mauro Poponcini crunched the nose of his Cooper T76 after spinning out of the chicane.

“It was very, very slippery,” said Milicevic. “All credit to the guys who decided not to race. It’s a shame we didn’t have a battle with Andrew Hibberd as he’d have given me a really hard time.” Armer confirmed just how tricky the combination of low track temperatures and cold tyres had been. “It was even worse than it looked!”

Gallo was delighted with his podium finish. “I come from the south of France, which is a long way, so I was glad to get a race.”

Paul Lawrence

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