Length: 4.307 km
F3 lap record: 1m32.980s (Felix Rosenqvist, 2012)
Circuit map: click here
Geographic position: click here
Over the last three years, the Dutch sea-side circuit of Zandvoort has provided the stage for some of Felix Rosenqvist's finest moments behind the wheel of a racing car. In a story of affection that began with a clean-sweep of F3 Euro Series podiums in 2011 - and reached a high with a record-equalling second Masters of Formula 3 victory earlier this year - it's no surprise to find the Mücke Motorsport man eager to write the next chapter this weekend, as the FIA Formula 3 European Championship regroups at the former Grand Prix venue for round eight of the 2013 campaign.
After producing a dominant display to win the standalone Masters of Formula 3 event for a second time (the first triumph came in 2011) back in July - a feat previously only achieved by current Williams F1 star Valtteri Bottas - Felix will be looking to carry the same sort of form into Zandvoort this time around, as he bids to dig into the lead enjoyed by overall leader Raffaele Marciello in the fight for the title. With three rounds to go before the championship comes to an end in mid-October, the F3 fraternity is set for an intense conclusion to an already memorable year - guaranteeing no shortage of drama as racing gets back underway among the dunes of western Holland.
Flashback: the previous round
FIA Formula 3 European Championship: Nürburgring
Press Release: Felix Rosenqvist stages emphatic Nürburgring fightback
Video: Felix discusses Nürburgring weekend
Video: FIA Formula 3 European Championship - Round 7 - review
FEATURE: The calm before the storm
Circuit Park Zandvoort is located on the Dutch North Sea coastline, at the heart of one of the country’s most popular summer retreats. The proximity of the sea and the massive sand dunes surrounding the area make grip levels low at the beginning of the weekend, but the situation usually improves as more and more rubber is laid down onto the track.
Zandvoort is rated as one of few remaining old-fashioned, true driving challenges, with fast and flowing corners that sweep into each other with seamless finesse. Turn 1 – the classic Tarzan Bocht – marks the best spot for overtaking, and the 4.307 km lap in general is a firm favourite with teams and drivers alike.
The most spectacular section of the circuit can be found in the sequence of corners at the far end of the lap, starting with the ultra-fast Scheivlak Bocht. On new tyres – and with a fair amount of bravery – Scheivlak can be negotiated flat out at 230 km/h; but the slightest mistake can have devastating effects. As if that in itself isn’t enough, the section that follows right afterwards is one of the most technical on the entire calendar, featuring two difficult right-handers and culminating in the critical Bocht 8 where a selection of potential lines are on offer.
On a weekend that marks the start of a busy end to the season, Zandvoort looks set to offer the F3 fraternity some beautiful late-summer conditions, with minimal risk of rain and temperatures approaching 20 degrees Celsius throughout all three days of action.
Click here for a detailed weather forecast
"I'm really looking forward to getting back to racing; it feels like forever since we left the Nürburgring. From now onwards, however, we face a much more intense schedule of three meetings within the space of less than a month - and that makes this weekend all the more important. We have to ensure that we reap the rewards of what we learned during the official test at Hockenheim, and transform it into tangible results - there simply isn't enough time to react if you find yourself struggling at this point of the campaign. On a personal note, I'm feeling full of confidence. Zandvoort is a great and very challenging track, and a place where I've claimed some of my most memorable victories. The Masters weekend earlier this year will probably remain one of the best of my career, so I'm obviously excited to get back to Zandvoort once again. I always aim to win whenever I step into the car, and in that respect, this weekend is no different."
All times local (GMT+02:00)
Friday 27 September
Free Practice 1: 13.05 (40 minutes)
Free Practice 2: 13.50 (40 minutes)
Qualifying 1: 17.35 (20 minutes)
Qualifying 2: 18.10 (20 minutes)
Saturday 28 September
Race 1: 11.10 (35 minutes)
Race 2: 18.00 (35 minutes)
Sunday 29 September
Race 3: 11.00 (35 minutes)
How it works
Each round of the FIA Formula 3 European Championship is made up of three races, all of which are of equal length (35 minutes) and importance for the outcome in the title chase. The points structure mirrors that in use in Formula 1, with the winner of each race being awarded 25 points.
The grid for all three races is formed in Friday's two qualifying sessions, which are separated by a short break. The reverse-grid regulations in use during the championship's previous Formula 3 Euro Series incarnation have been dropped for 2013, with qualifying now left as the only tool for shaping up starting positions.
The Race 1 grid is established by the outright results of Qualifying 1, while the subsequent second qualifying session forms the grid for Race 3. For Race 2, the grid will be based on each driver's second-fastest lap in Qualifying 1.
The full 2013 calendar and points system can be viewed here.
Preliminary entry list
FIA Formula 3 European Championship - 2013 entry list
HOW TO FOLLOW FELIX THIS WEEKEND
As always, www.felixracing.se will be fully updated throughout the weekend, with reports from each of the sessions that take place. The website is the central hub of information for everything that goes on both on and off the track, and will also feature other relevant news, pictures and videos.
All three races at the event will be streamed LIVE at www.fiaf3europe.com. A link to the stream will appear at the start page of www.felixracing.se. All-in-all, FIA Formula 3 European Championship action is broadcast in 149 countries throughout the world, out of which more than 80 provide LIVE TV coverage. For further information, please click here.
The interaction with fans and followers will principally involve Felix Racing's official Facebook Fan Page (link below), where supporters can discuss all the goings-on and post potential questions to Felix. Tweets will also be forthcoming through Felix's own Twitter account (@FRosenqvist).