Victorious Doohan Still Believes In Title: ‘It’s Never Over Until It’s Over’

After an intense day of racing at Spa-Francorchamps in interchangeable conditions, the final race of the day saw Trident’s Jack Doohan win his second F3 race of the season ahead of teammate David Schumacher and Charouz’s Logan Sargeant. The Australian has now closed the gap to championship leader Dennis Hauger to 46 points. 

By Tyler Foster

“I’m very happy for myself and the team to get a one-two”, Doohan told selected media including F1 Feeder Series. “In the end I was still maintaining a gap and the guys weren’t catching. As soon as someone became a threat, I started to push. It was a good race.”

After securing reverse grid pole in Saturday morning’s Sprint Race with a 12th place finish, Doohan led from lights to flag despite two safety cars being deployed for separate incidents throughout the race. From the start he gapped the chasing pack and continued to increase his lead over the following laps. After the first safety car period, he led from the restart. 

“Drier conditions than this morning, and I have to say that visibility was a lot better from pole. I got a decent start, I wasn’t expecting it to be as good as it was, but I was happy with the getaway. From there, I was managing the rears because that is where I was quite quick early on.”

“It was very difficult to know how much to manage the tyre. From the early stages I immediately tried to find where the water was on track and then go forward on the brake bias even though I then had to brake a bit earlier into the slow speed corners. I just wanted to keep the rear alive because I saw that I was quick in the early stages. In the end I think I could’ve pushed more and I would’ve been fine on tyres.”

Credit: Formula Motorsport Ltd

Safety car

Over the course of the weekend we have seen multiple incidents in the wet conditions. There was a second safety car caused by a collision on the exit of Radillon between the Jenzer of Calan Williams and the Campos of Amaury Cordeel. With the recent resurfacing of the Eau Rouge-Radillon complex, the safety of this area of the circuit has once again been called into question. 

After a number of safety car laps, the race clock expired and the race finished under the safety car.

“Overall, I’m very happy. I would have preferred to win a full race and not finish behind the Safety Car but I will take the points – game on for tomorrow.”

“I went quite early at the restart, before the bus-stop chicane. I seemed to get a decent exit and quite a good run through Eau Rouge and get a gap from the iconic Spa slipstream. The rain at the end was a lot heavier and if there wasn’t the second safety car it would have been a lot more extreme.”

For Doohan, he is doing everything he can to close the gap and maintain pressure on title leader Dennis Hauger who finished in P9. Doohan will start on pole for tomorrow’s Feature Race after qualifying quickest on Friday, while Hauger will start down in 14th. 

Credit: Formula Motorsport Ltd

Maximising potential

“On my side of things, we are just trying to maximise our potential as much as we can race by race. We can only do as good as this and keep the form that we have and hopefully by the end, we’ll be there.” 

“I believed before the weekend and I still believe that it’s never over until it’s over.”

Going into the Feature Race on Sunday (9:40 BST/10:40 CEST), it is certainly a massive opportunity for the Australian driver. The momentum may have shifted over the course of this weekend but Doohan will want to convert his pole if he wishes to fulfil his dream of becoming Formula 3 Champion.

“Obviously it’s a Sprint Race but I want to win the Feature Race and ultimately the Championship. This is a small step in getting there. The weekend is not over so we still need to keep our feet planted on the ground and work harder in analysing how we can go even quicker. It’s great to start from pole again and have a good idea of what I need to do from the start and then lap-by-lap. Conditions-wise it depends on the rain tomorrow and how much water there is.”

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