Featured on Downforce Radio‘s official website on December 16, 2019
BlackArts Racing’s Joey Alders leads the championship standings by dominating the weekend with two wins and one podium in the 2020 Formula 3 Asian Championship season opener at Sepang International Circuit, Malaysia.
The recently-crowned Asian Formula Renault champion continued his strong form in Race 2 as he overtook Absolute Racing’s Devlin deFrancesco into Turn 1 for the P1 position. The fully wet-race also witnessed the close battle between Hitech GP’s Nikita Mazepin and Absolute Racing’s Daniel Cao for the podium position, with the Russian driver finished in P2.
Former BWT Arden Formula 2 driver and the recent-announced Grasser Racing Rolex Daytona 24 Hours driver Tatiana Calderon had an impressive result by finishing in P4 after started from the back of the grid, with Alders’ BlackArts Racing teammate Yu Kanamaru finished P5 ahead of Zen Motorsport’s James Yu.
2018 Lamborghini Super Trofeo Asia competitor Paul Wong won the Masters category in the Race 2 after Swiss racer Thomas Luedi was unable to start the race.
Race 3 saw Pinnacle Motorsport’s Jack Doohan took a flawless pole-to-flag finish to conclude the weekend at Sepang. The Australian Red Bull Junior Team racer immediately pulled out a gap in the opening lap of the race with DeFrancesco took on the redemption to finish P2 in the race, while Alders managed to secure P3 in the tricky conditions.
“It was not bad,” commented Doohan about his weekend. “Obviously get out in the testing in the first free practice session which made a bit more difficult, but managed to get the pace back in the qualifying and put on pole position in the second qualifying session.
“Second place in Race 1 wasn’t obviously the win, it’s amazing but still valuable for the points. And in Race 2, there was a difference between the wet batches of tyres, which drivers got lucky and some of them didn’t which meant the pace was about ten seconds lap slower for some, so we finished eighth in Race 2. Luckily in Race 3, we finally managed to get the victory so I’m happy with that.”
Championship leader Alders summarised his weekend after Race 3, “No words, difficult to describe [about the weekend]. We went into this weekend, actually not that high expectations. Really thanks to BlackArts Racing for giving me this opportunity, Oloi Inc. for the sponsor. Because I was the champion in the Asian Formula Renault, they give me this opportunity to race in this round and it went really well. Back home in the Netherlands, I will be looking for more sponsors to do the complete races in the championship, as well as the budgets, so we will see.
“It was a great weekend with three out of three podiums, so I’m really happy with that.”
The championship continues next month at the Middle East as Dubai Autodrome will host the Races 4 to 6 on 10th and 11th January.