Results > 7th-8th April 2018 - Donington Park

Milicevic scores Donington double

Milicevic scores Donington double

Historic Formula 3 Championship

Donington Park, 7/8 April 2018

Jon Milicevic scored an impressive double win as the 2018 Historic Formula 3 Championship kicked off at Donington Park (7/8 April). In both races, Andrew Hibberd was Milicevic’s big rival but two spins ultimately left Hibberd back in second while Ian Bankhurst was elated to bag a brace of podiums in the Alexis Mk8.

A good grid for the start of the championship season included the race debut of the ex-David Purley Brabham BT28, racing for the first time in more than 40 years in the hands of new owner Steve Jones. He qualified an excellent sixth on Saturday morning as Hibberd (Brabham BT18) took pole by a quarter of a second from Milicevic (BT21B).

Bankhurst, Simon Armer (March 703) and Peter Thompson (Brabham BT21) rounded out the top five, while Keith Messer (Vesey), Michael Scott (Brabham BT28), returnee Andy Jarvis (March 703) and Steve Seaman (Brabham BT21) packed out a quality top 10.

The first race ran at the end of Saturday afternoon and Milicevic had to contend with a big challenge from the recovering Hibberd over the second half of the race. “I hooked second on the down change into McLeans and it locked the rear wheels,” said Hibberd of his quick spin. He was straight back up to second and hunted down Milicevic on a track still oily from the preceding Guards Trophy race. The final laps featured a magnificent wheel-to-wheel contest between two accomplished racers but Milicevic was ahead by just eight-hundredths of a second when it mattered.

Into third went a jubilant Ian Bankhurst in the Alexis after coming out on top of a tremendous battle that involved as many as four cars. While Seaman and Thompson both retired with mechanical issues, Armer ran fourth after falling away from Bankhurst in the closing laps. “Those two are in a different league: we won the other race,” said Bankhurst of the top two drivers on the podium. Jarvis was a fine fifth but only just as Mark Linstone (Brabham BT21) and Messer chased him to the flag.

No one was more disappointed than Milicevic when Hibberd dropped time with an Old Hairpin spin in the second race as light rain made conditions tricky. They had gone wheel-to-wheel in the opening laps. Once again Hibberd was soon back into his stride and fought back up to second, but the gap was just too big and there was more than 10 second between them at the end of 15 laps.

The slippery track caught out Messer and Seaman while Scott and Bankhurst tussled for third, which eventually went to the Alexis to complete a great weekend for Bankhurst. Another excellent battle ran for fifth as Linstone just beat Peter Hamilton (Tecno) and Jones to the chequered flag.

It had been a fine weekend for Historic F3 and now attention will turn to the Justin Haler Trophy at Cadwell Park (May 19/20) when the strong British field will be further boosted by contenders in the European series.

Paul Lawrence

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