Mika Mäki wins Formula 3 Euro Series season opener Finnish driver, Mika Mäki (Mücke Motorsport) is the first winner of the 2008 Formula 3 Euro Series. The Formula 3 novice won the exciting race at the 4.574 kilometers long Hockenheimring Baden-Württemberg from Charlie Kimball (Prema Powerteam) and Edoardo Mortara (Signature-Plus), the best-placed Volkswagen driver. Thus, the company from Wolfsburg already scored its maiden podium finish in its ninth race in the Formula 3 Euro Series. Volkswagen drivers also claimed fourth, fifth and sixth place.
Mäki, who became the first Finn to win a round of the world’s strongest junior race series, benefited from the retirement of Nico Hülkenberg (ART Grand Prix), who was sidelined with an engine problem while in the lead. After 23 laps, Mäki won with a margin of 1.464 seconds over returnee Kimball.
During the race, British driver, Jon Lancaster (ART Grand Prix) barrel-rolled his car. In the battle for sixth place, the rookie driver hit the rear wheel of the car driven by Jean-Karl Vernay (Signature-Plus) and barrel-rolled. He had no apparent injuries, but was taken to hospital for a precautionary check-up.
Mika Mäki (Mücke Motorsport): “Winning my first race in the Formula 3 Euro Series is great. So far, the weekend has been perfect, in spite of the weather conditions being quite difficult at times. After Hülkenberg had retired, I took the lead, controlled the race and safely drove first place home.”
Charlie Kimball (Prema Powerteam): “Being back in the Formula 3 Euro Series is great. And finishing on the podium right away is making the return even better. As I didn’t want to take any risks, I safely drove second place home.”
Edoardo Mortara (Signature-Plus): “I am really happy with a podium finish in my first race with Volkswagen at the start of their first complete season in the Formula 3 Euro Series. Now, we can work on from here. There is still a lot of potential in the car and the engine. I am totally happy with third place as today, Mäki and Kimball were quicker than me.”
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