Having won the RTL GP Masters of Formula 3 in 2011, Felix Rosenqvist was in the mix for another podium when the 2012 edition of the Dutch classic took place at Zandvoort this weekend.
The Swede qualified in fifth place, two tenths adrift of the front row of the grid, and used a strong start in Sunday’s race to challenge Spaniard Carlos Sainz Jr. for third around the outside of the first corner. A lack of space on the exit of the right-hander, however, saw Rosenqvist being pushed wide over the kerbs and drop down to ninth place – a position he kept over the line after a weekend where the Mücke Motorsport driver had constantly been a feature of the top five in Europe’s most prestigious F3 event.
"Ninth obviously isn’t what I was hoping for after having won this race last year, but I knew that I had to make up some ground immediately in order to challenge for the podium and unfortunately things just didn’t work out to my advantage this time around," says Felix Rosenqvist. "I was extremely close to getting past Carlos (Sainz Jr.) for third, and I think I would have been able to hold on to a spot on the podium if I had managed to pass him. As the RTL GP Masters of Formula 3 is a standalone event with no championship points up for grabs, the individual result is what counts, so – for me – it doesn’t really matter where you end up as long as it’s outside the podium. It was just one of those things."
The race was won by Daniel Juncadella, who led home team-mate Raffaele Marciello in a 1-2 success for Italian outfit Prema Powerteam.
"This weekend has proved that we are able to challenge near the front in both wet and dry conditions, but we still have to find some performance before we can be entirely happy," Rosenqvist concludes. "Prema Powerteam has got an edge right now, but we will work as hard as we possibly can to try and bridge the gap – and I’m confident that we can do so over the second half of the season."
The next race for Felix Rosenqvist is the sixth round of the FIA European F3 Championship, which takes place at Spa-Francorchamps (Belgium) on July 26-28.