Cooper Tires British Formula 3 International Series competitor Menasheh Idafar secured the third National Class victory of his maiden season at Silverstone Arena Grand Prix Circuit today, Sunday, 2nd May, with a hard-fought performance in tricky, wet conditions.
Bouncing back well from a disappointing first day on Saturday, 1st May, where an incident on the grid ruled him out of round four before it even started, the T-Sport driver produced a strong showing in round five where he passed National Class points leader James Cole with a couple of laps to go to take the win by two seconds.
Starting the wet encounter at the back of the grid due to an accident on Saturday, the 19-year-old delivered an excellent drive during the short 10-lap ‘sprint race’ and carved his way through the order well. Tagging on to the back of Cole by lap seven, Menasheh passed his team-mate on the ninth tour and pulled clear to make amends for the round four disappointment.
For round six Menasheh lined up with the National Class pole position, 17th on the grid overall, and led comfortably until contact from International Class runner Rio Haryanto on lap four forced him off the circuit.
Recovering strongly, Menasheh chased down Cole – who had inherited the class lead – and finished just seven 10ths of a second shy at the flag in 18th position overall. Earning another good points haul for second in class, the British-born Bahraini is now 25 points shy of Cole in the driver standings.
“It was great to get another class win today, I really enjoyed the wet race and I think we showed we had really good pace”, said Menasheh, “The contact from (Rio) Haryanto in round six knocked me out of the lead but we came through well, I pushed really hard over the last few laps to try and catch James (Cole). It’s been a mixed weekend for us but there are still 24 races to go – it’s a long season.”
There is now a three week break in the British Formula 3 calendar with rounds seven, eight and nine taking place at Magny-Cours in France over the weekend 22nd/23rd May – Menasheh’s first ever experience of the FIA Formula One World Championship venue.