The Grand Prix of Pau, the third round of the 2017 FIA F3 European Championship, is considered the jewel-in-the-crown of F3 racing and, this weekend, Ferdinand Habsburg took valuable points in all three races finishing in sixth place in the event’s grand finale and climbing to fifth in the championship standings.
Making his Pau debut in a wet practice session made for tricky qualifying but, after starting race one in P14, the Carlin Racing driver climbed six places, no mean feat on the narrow street circuit, and crossed the line 35-minutes later in eighth place.
“You can’t afford to take any risks here,” he commented. “There’s no point coming to Pau, to a race everyone wants to win, just to end your weekend after a few laps. Having a wet practice session wasn’t ideal, as I’d never driven the track before, but I did okay and managed to take some points in race one.”
In qualifying two, Habsburg improved and started races two and three from ninth place. Despite struggling to put on a trademark ‘climbing through the pack’ spectacle that fans have come to expect from him, Habsburg finished both races inside the top-ten; taking eighth in race two and sixth in race three.
“It’s so hard to pass anyone here at Pau,” he continued. “I’m pleased to take a points haul and get plenty of track time. Next year, I’ll return prepared to make an attack on the podium.
“Carlin did another incredible job this weekend – the car was great, the team gave me invaluable track knowledge and I have every confidence in each and every one of them – you can’t ask for more than that!”
Although there was no Champagne this weekend for the 19-year old, three solid results moved him up to P5 in the overall championship and he heads to Hungaroring on the 17-18 June ready to make a podium challenge.
Grand Prix of Pau race results:
Race one: P8
Race two: P8
Race three: P6