Drive-through penalty costs Viktor Jensen best ever finish but he makes his point!
DRIVER NEWS: Nexa Racing driver Viktor Jensen was forced to settle for 10th place in round five of the British F3 International Series at the legendary Italian circuit of Monza in his The Visa Company-GAC backed car, earning a point. A drive-through penalty imposed on lap seven because of a pre-race infringement meant the 20 year old Esher-based Icelander was forced down to the back of the field. The car Jensen had just overtaken at that point ended up in 4th position.
Jensen began the race in typically strong fashion, storming from 19th overall on the grid to 7th in class within the first lap. He continued in this vein, setting the quickest first sector time despite failing to fully find his feet in practice and suffering a throttle problem during qualifying. Indeed, the 20 year old was consistently the quickest driver on the track for the final third of the race.
Then came the drive-through penalty. Jensen was told by his race engineer to return to the pits at the end of his formation lap. While this is permitted in other series, British F3 rules state a driver must take their place on the grid straight away. Even though Jensen gained no benefit, race officials chose to impose a drive through penalty. Moreover, the Icelander was merely following instructions as any driver would be expected to do in that scenario.
Speaking on the eve of Sunday evening’s round six, Jensen said: “It might sound perverse but I’m happier than I’ve been all season and to dwell on what could have been would not be helpful at this stage. We can analyse what should have happened after the weekend. Most importantly we’ve got ourselves where we need to be in terms of time and that’s a big achievement for everyone involved in the team. Tomorrow will be another big challenge but I’m as confident now as I can be.”
Nexa Racing Team Manager Andy Kidby said: “It’s been difficult because of the changing conditions with the inclement weather. But we’ve made progress with the car for sure and given Viktor more confidence to enable the performance to progress up the ladder. Viktor’s performance has shown that progress is being made and with the continued effort that we’re putting in the rewards will start to come quite soon.”