PREMA Racing opened its 2021 FIA Formula 3 season with a win at Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya. Lining up for the two reverse-grid races held on Saturday, Olli Caldwell navigated the pack to perfection to secure his first win in the series in race 2 coming from a solid sixth place in race 1. Starting from P7 in race 2, the British racer quickly improved his position. While in P5, he made the most out of two contacts ahead and boldly held onto the lead throughout the closing stages.
Sadly, one of the aforementioned contacts involved teammate Dennis Hauger, who was vying for the lead. After starting race 1 from P12 following yesterday's pole position and the reverse grid, he delivered good points with P8. While fighting for the lead of race 2, the Norwegian made contact with his main contender which put him out of contention.
On the other hand, Arthur Leclerc put together a powerful recovery in race 2 after falling victim to a puncture earlier in the day. The Monegasque was able to secure P12, gaining momentum for tomorrows' final race.
Dennis Hauger: "In race 1, I stayed with the pack in front and tried to take the advantage of people fighting and making mistakes. I had a few good fights and the pace was really good in the end, just a bit unfortunate with the safety car but overall happy with the race. In race 2 the start and the middle part were pretty good, and we kept it clean until we were P2. Then I saw a gap, and there were just two laps left so I was going for it and I got a bit squeezed, on the kerb on the inside which made me not able to turn anymore and we made contact. I still have a good opportunity tomorrow, we’ll see how it goes."
Arthur Leclerc: "After a puncture put us at the back in race 1 despite the good pace, we experienced a good race 2 overall, and I’m particularly happy about the big comeback. It was a tough race, tough with the tyres, tough with the overtakes and a lot of big moments. Happy for P12, no points for today but we showed big potential in both races."
Olli Caldwell: "Obviously, I'm over the moon with the result, from P7 to P1. It was a crazy race with some carnage, but it shows that you have to be consistent to get the points. There's still one more race and after a few hours, my focus will turn to that. I have a little time to celebrate but the goal is on tomorrow, to do the same and maximize the points. Today was great, but if you focus on the win you'd be stuck there. I focus on what I did well and the mistakes I made because I definitely made some, and by doing so I will be able to maximize tomorrow's race and the ones in the future.”