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Italian F3
Matt Lee runs well in Italy
American Matt Lee recorded impressive results in the Italian Formula 3 doubleheader at the Autodromo Riccardo Paletti course in Verano, Italy last weekend.

Lee, of Syosset, N.Y., qualified fourth out of 23 competitors and then finished fifth and seventh in the races.

The 20-year-old's previous best finish in the highly competitive series was a fourth at Hockenheim, Germany in June.

With the top-five and top-10 finishes Lee advanced from 12th to ninth in the overall point standings with 10 races completed and six remaining.

The strong showings came even though Lee recently joined a different team, RC Motorsports, and he was driving a different car.  He has been driving a Mygale in the series so far this year, but now he's in a Dallara.  His car number changed from 52 to 7 too.

"I really need to thank the team," Lee said.  "I only had two half-hour practice sessions to get going with these guys, but it was my best qualifying result in the dry so far this year.  We kept getting quicker even though we were still getting to know each other.  The team is really good. I prefer the Dallara too; I think it's the car of choice for this series."

Lee was tenth in the first practice session and sixth in the second practice session at Verano before he qualified fourth.

"I was pleased with the fifth- and the seventh-place finishes because I had only been to this track once before for one day of testing over the winter," he added.  "That was with the Mygale and we were on Michelin tires but last weekend I was in a Dallara on Kumho tires, so it was quite different."

Lee has at least been to the three circuits that will host the remaining doubleheaders: Vallelunga on Sept. 26, Mugello on Oct. 10 and Monza on Oct. 24.

"I think the Dallara will be very good at our next track, Vallelunga," he said.  "I just want to thank the team for all their help.  I hope to finish strong in the remaining races, and I'm looking for a podium finish soon!"

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