Christian Mansell took a stunning race victory in Euroformula Open’s third race of the weekend at the Hungaroring, narrowly beating an impressive Francesco Simonazzi (BVM Racing) and championship leader Ollie Goethe.
The Cryptotower driver started from pole position, owing to qualifying sixth on Saturday, and the top six cars being reversed for race three. Ayrton Simmons (Drivex) lined-up alongside him, but failed to get off the line as the lights went out. Motopark’s Alex Garcia and race two winner Josh Mason (Cryptotower) were also left stranded, leading to a safety car as the field started lap two.
The pause only lasted one lap, and as the field got back underway, it was Mansell still leading from Oliver Goethe and Frederick Lubin of Motopark. Lubin had immediate pressure from Francesco Simonazzi of BVM Racing, who capitalised on the dramatic start to move up the order.
Simonazzi had the pace advantage, and while the right opportunity took a while to present itself, a good run out of the first corner on lap 12 allowed the Italian to take the inside – and third position – at turn two.
Soon, Simonazzi had charged up to the back of Oliver Goethe, who had spent the entire race to that point forcing Christian Mansell to defend for his lead. But, with the Dane preoccupied with looking for a way into the lead, Simonazzi struck at turn two once again. The BVM driver ran side-by-side with Goethe through the left-hander, forcing him to yield for the following fast right.
Simonazzi looked quicker than Mansell, and picked up where Goethe left off, challenging the leader on several occasions. However, the Australian would hold on to take the victory, with Simonazzi and Goethe rounding out the podium.
Courtesy of outscoring Goethe in both Sunday races, Christian Mansell enters the summer break with a reduced points deficit between himself and the Dane in the championship. Goethe leaves the Hungaroring with 308 points, while Christian Mansell is 69 points behind on 239. Vladislav Lomko leads the way in the rookie standings, and is third in the overall classification on 198 points.
The Euroformula Open will return to action at Imola on the 3-4 September.