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F3 Feature Race Results: Hungary

Following a chaotic Sprint race, who would bring home the biggest haul of points in the all-important Feature race?

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The Prema Racing of Zak O’Sullivan saw the chequered flag first to claim victory in the Hungary Feature race, closing the gap to Championship leader Gabriel Bortoleto.

Prema Racing driver Zak O’Sullivan started the Feature race on pole position (Image Credit: @Formula3 on Twitter)

Williams Academy driver Zak O’Sullivan became the sixth polesitter in seven rounds on Friday, and would start the Feature race on the front row alongside Prema Racing rookie Dino Beganovic.

Championship leader Gabriel Bortoleto extended his significant lead in the Drivers’ Standings to 46 points after finishing second in the Sprint race. He lines up ninth on the grid for Sunday’s event. Meanwhile nearest rival Pepe Marti has endured a frustrating weekend so far, qualifying just outside the top 12 and getting taken out by Nikola Tsolov in the Sprint.

Saturday’s Sprint race saw plenty of overtakes and incidents further back, but at the front reverse grid polesitter Gabriele Mini took a commanding victory to reignite his Title chances.

Various penalties were handed out following the conclusion of the Sprint race, though none affected the points-paying positions. All three Van Amersfoort Racing (VAR) cars were given five-place grid penalties for continuing to work on tyres after the specified time limit, while newcomer Woo-hyun Shin had five seconds added to his race time for multiple track limits offences.

Luke Browning also got five seconds for making a move on Oliver Gray off the track, and Tsolov received a three-place grid penalty for his aforementioned collision with Marti in the race.

The Sprint race proved difficult for the drivers in terms of tyre degradation, with several cars having to crawl through the final few laps to avoid potential tyre blowouts. In response, Pirelli recommended that the Feature race be reduced in length to the same number of laps to reduce the risk of punctures.

Opening laps

The skies were clear with no threat of rain. All 30 cars were on the slick tyre ready for 19 laps of nonstop action.

O’Sullivan covered his lead into the first corner ahead of Beganovic and Fornaroli. Oliver Goethe tried to take fourth, but stuck behind Colapinto for the moment.

DRS was enabled at the start of lap three, though O’Sullivan managed to break over a second ahead of Beganovic in the opening handful of laps.

A train began to develop from Paul Aron in sixth all the way down to Luke Browning in 12th, with the TV cameras focussing on Bortoleto under pressure from the Campos Racing of Christian Mansell in a battle for eighth place.

But Bortoleto turned defence into attack, as he made full use of DRS to blast past Jonny Edgar to snatch P7. Meanwhile, O’Sullivan’s lead extended to just under two seconds at the end of lap six.

The race develops

Marti was making his way through the field from a start in 13th. The Spaniard made an easy move on teammate Mansell for ninth on lap seven, followed by an identical move on Edgar on the very next lap.

The Hitech Pulse-Eight of Sebastian Montoya damaged his front wing while attempting an overtake on Rafael Villagomez. He also suffered a puncture, and opted to retire from the race. A weekend to forget for Juan-Pablo Montoya’s son…

Colapinto was sticking to the gearbox of Fornaroli, and the two swapped positions in the battle for the final podium spot on lap nine. Goethe was next to make it past Fornaroli, around the outside of Turn two.

Tyre degradation was still an ever-present worry for the entire field, as Kaylen Frederick pulled into the pits with a suspected puncture or other related issue. Would more drivers fall off pace-wise towards the end of the race?

Fornaroli continued to plummet down the order, next falling victim to the charging Aron. Just a few seconds back Marti attempted a move on Bortoleto into the first corner, but locked up under braking and fell back from the Brazilian for the time being. Marti eventually got by on lap 13.

The closing stages

Those who had managed their tyres well now had the upper hand. O’Sullivan’s lead stood at four seconds with six laps remaining, with second-placed Beganovic a further seven seconds ahead of Colapinto in third.

Marti was looking very quick, as he eased past Fornaroli for sixth position. Further back, a five-way battle for ninth, with Mansell duking it out with the likes of Edgar, Browning and Mari Boya for the minor points places.

Penalties for Tsolov and Maxwell Esterson, both for forcing another driver off the track.

Two Tridents changed positions, with Fornaroli dropping behind Bortoleto in eighth and seventh respectively. Edgar finally squeezed through Mansell for P9.

Boya subsequently also got past Mansell for the final points position, while Marti closed right on the rear wing of Aron in a developing battle for fifth. He’d have just one lap to make a move though.

O’Sullivan with a light-to-flag victory, taking second in the Championship away from Marti despite the latter’s impressive drive. Beganovic just two seconds adrift, with Colapinto rounding out the podium.

Feature race final classification

Full results can be found here.

Feature Image Credit: @Formula3 on Twitter

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