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DATE News (chronologically)
05/07/11
gp3
Melker wins GP3 race at Spa
Nigel Melker celebrates
A faultless driver form Nigel Melker earned him his first GP3 Series victory at Istanbul Park today.

Poleman Tom Dillmann got bogged down at the start of the race leaving Tech 1 Racing’s Andrea Caldarelli and RSC Mücke Motorsport’s Melker to pass off the line. The Frenchman managed to hang on to third despite Lotus ART’s Valtteri Bottas’s best efforts to spoil Dillmann’s start even further. It was at the end of lap 1 that Melker then made his move to take the lead, and seal his first GP3 Series victory.

Dillmann tried to grab back a spot from Caldarelli, but was unable to find a way past the Italian, and before long the Carlin driver found himself defending from a charging Bottas. After an earlier spin off the track MW Arden’s Lewis Williamson found himself down the field battling with Leonardo Cordeiro midway through the race: the two drivers were locked in a wheel-to-wheel battle, during which pair touched wheels, and both cars spun off the track resulting in a roll from Williamson when his car hit the gravel trap. The safety car was deployed.

At the restart Melker pulled away from second place man Caldarelli to give himself a few laps breathing space. For the remainder of the race the Tech 1 Racing driver slowly chipped away at Melker’s lead but was unable to get close enough until the last lap, as Melker had the race totally under control. Bottas was all over Dillmann’s back wing to the checkered flag, but was unable to find a way past and finished the race in fourth. Antonio Felix Da Costa finished fifth for Status Grand Prix, ahead of MW Arden’s Mitch Evans.

Dean Smith was set for reverse pole in Race 2 tomorrow, but the Addax Team driver went wide into the final complex allowing Michael Christensen to pass – the Dane then capitalized even further by passing Alexander Sims to take P7. Sims will start tomorrow’s race from pole position.

Race 1 results:

POS NO. DRIVER ENTRANT LAPS TIME GAP
1 31 N. MELKER RSC Mucke Motorsport 15 28:13.773 0.000s
2 18 A. CALDARELLI Tech 1 Racing 15 28:14.378 0.605
3 15 T. DILLMANN Carlin 15 28:16.715 2.942
4 2 V. BOTTAS Lotus ART 15 28:17.613 3.840
5 5 A. FELIX DA COSTA Status Grand Prix 15 28:18.183 4.410
6 26 M. EVANS MW Arden 15 28:20.987 7.214
7 30 M. CHRISTENSEN RSC Mucke Motorsport 15 28:24.381 10.608
8 4 A. SIMS Status Grand Prix 15 28:25.486 11.713
9 25 D. SMITH Addax Team 15 28:25.701 11.928
10 24 G. CHAVES Addax Team 15 28:33.332 19.559
11 7 N. MULLER Jenzer Motorsport 15 28:37.446 23.673
12 22 Z. AMBERG Atech CRS GP 15 28:37.965 24.192
13 21 N. YELLOLY Atech CRS GP 15 28:38.750 24.977
14 6 I. LUKASHEVICH Status Grand Prix 15 28:39.953 26.180
15 17 A. VAINIO Tech 1 Racing 15 28:40.127 26.354
16 19 T. PAL KISS Tech 1 Racing 15 28:41.012 27.239
17 3 J. CALADO Lotus ART 15 28:41.012 27.507
18 12 M. LAINE Marussia Manor Racing 15 28:41.280 29.871
19 27 S. TRUMMER MW Arden 15 28:43.995 30.222
20 23 D. STOREY Addax Team 15 28:44.417 30.644
21 14 C. DALY Carlin 15 28:45.109 31.336
22 1 P. NUNES Lotus ART 15 28:45.839 32.066
23 8 M. ZIMIN Jenzer Motorsport 15 29:07.704 53.931
24 10 QUAIFE-HOBBS Marussia Manor Racing 15 29:16.869 63.096
25 9 V. GHIRELLI Jenzer Motorsport . 29:16.869 63.096
26 11 R. HARYANTO Marussia Manor Racing . . 1 LAP
. . Did Not Finish . . . .
. 29 L. BACHETA RSC Mucke Motorsport 8 15:45.663 DNF
. 16 L. CORDEIRO Carlin 3 5:41.926 DNF
. 28 L. WILLIAMSON MW Arden 3 5:42.935 DNF
. 20 M. STOCKINGER Atech CRS GP 1 2:00.927 DNF
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