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Matheus Leist snatches British F3 pole position

Saturday, April 16 2016

Double R Racing's Matheus Leist and Carlin's Ricky Collard enjoyed a dramatic battle in qualifying at Brands Hatch, but it was the Brazilian Leist who came out on top by just 0.191s to take pole for race one of the weekend. Collard had to settle for second ahead of HHC Motorsport's Raoul Hyman, Lanan Racing's Toby Sowery and championship leader Enaam Ahmed.

A dry Grand Prix circuit awaited the BRDC British Formula 3 Championship field as the 20-minute qualifying session got underway. The Chris Dittmann Racing trio of Quinlan Lall, Krishnaraaj Mahadik and Jeremy Wahome led the gaggle of cars out on to track but before a competitive time was even set, the red flag came out as Colton Herta came to grief at the beginning of the GP loop, leaving him to start right at the back of the grid for race one.

The session resumed with just under 17 minutes remaining and soon real lap times began to appear on the timing screens, as championship leader Enaam Ahmed set the pace with a 1m23.300s. South African Sisa Ngebulana moved into second for HHC Motorsport with American Lall third. Another interruption to the session stopped the flow of fastest times however as Double R Racing's Aleksanteri Huovinen went off and caused a second red flag period.

The clock was reset to 10 minutes remaining and the session resumed with the remaining 19 cars all determined to grab as high a grid spot as possible. Ngebulana jumped up to provisional pole with a 1m21.757s, as Ricky Collard moved into second. Raoul Hyman soon got into the mix and sat in third as five minutes remained.

Collard then posted a new best time in the session with a 1m21.083s, with Enaam Ahmed going just 0.079s slower to take second spot. However, the order was to change once again in the dying moments of qualifying as Brazilian Leist found more speed and took provisional pole with a 1m20.416s. That put him 0.191s ahead of Collard who was unable to respond. Raoul Hyman moved into third and on his final lap, Toby Sowery was able to claim fourth, pushing Enaam Ahmed down to fifth.

Sixth place belonged to Sisa Ngebulana ahead of Carlin's Ameya Vaidyanathan, Ben Hingeley, Thomas Randle in ninth with Tarun Reddy rounding out the top-10.

Race one gets underway at 15:30 and you can follow all the action on the official British F3 website.

BRDC British F3 - Brands Hatch Grand Prix - Qualifying

1. Matheus Leist, Double R Racing, 1m20.416s
2. Ricky Collard, Carlin, +0.191s
3. Raoul Hyman, HHC Motorsport, +0.218s
4. Toby Sowery, Lanan Racing, +0.557s
5. Enaam Ahmed, Douglas Motorsport, +0.621s
6. Sisa Ngebulana, HHC Motorsport, +0.819s
7. Ameya Vaidyanathan, Carlin, +0.934s
8. Ben Hingeley, HHC Motorsport, +0.988s
9. Thomas Randle, Douglas Motorsport, +1.115s
10. Tarun Reddy, Fortec Motorsports, +1.234s
11. Thomas Maxwell, Sean Walkinshaw Racing, +1.264s
12. Krishnaraaj Mahadik, Chris Dittmann Racing, +1.353s
13. Akhil Rabindra, Lanan Racing, +1.431s
14. Al Faisal Al Zubair, Fortec Motorsports, +1.462s
15. Quinlan Lall, Chris Dittmann Racing, +1.522s
16. Jan Jonck, Sean Walkinshaw Racing, +1.531s
17. Enzo Bortoleto, Double R Racing, +1.535s
18. Eugene Denyssen, Sean Walkinshaw Racing, +1.631s
19. Jeremy Wahome, Chris Dittmann Racing, +2.714s
20. Aleksanteri Huovinen, Double R Racing, +5.118s
21. Colton Herta, Carlin, No time set