Front-running Cooper Tires British Formula 3 International Series racer Menasheh Idafar made a good start to the third event of the 2011 season at the new Snetterton 300 Circuit today, Friday, 13th May, by closing out the officially timed test less than 0.4 seconds away from the top three.
Off the back of his stunning podium finish at Oulton Park three weeks ago during the sixth round of the season, the 20-year-old ran strongly at the newly configured 2.97-mile Norfolk track during two one-hour sessions with his best time of 1m40.416 seconds (106.43mph) coming this afternoon.
During this morning’s run he steered his T-Sport engineered Dallara-Volkswagen to the 14th quickest time of 1m41.247 seconds (105.56mph). In session two though, Menasheh took a full 0.8 seconds off that to end the outing 10th quickest – although 12th overall on combined times for the day.
“I’m quite happy with how today has gone”, said the British-born Bahraini, “This morning we worked on set-up and ran on used tyres and then in the afternoon when we pushed a bit more we got up to fifth fastest before some others took newer tyres again. Overall, I’m pleased – it’s a good start.”
This weekend’s action at Snetterton 300 marks the biggest race meeting the new circuit will have held since opening in late-March. From being a seven corner track, largely dominated by two long straights, the revised configuration now boasts 12 turns thanks to a challenging new infield section which adds approximately an extra mile to the layout.
Qualifying will take place at 10.40 tomorrow morning, Saturday, 14th May, with the first of three races getting underway at around 14.55. Rounds eight and nine of the 2011 Cooper Tires British F3 International Series will follow on Sunday, 15th May, at 10.55 and 16.15 respectively.