BRDC Superstars driver Jonny Edgar scored his best finish of the season so far at a tricky Belgian Grand Prix.
Coming off the back of a strong weekend at the Hungaroring, which saw Jonny take a double points finish, the Cumbrian based driver was after more success.
Friday’s practice and qualifying sessions all took place in wet conditions so Jonny and his team elected to only complete a handful of laps in practice in order to preserve the wet tyres, knowing that there was a high chance the rest of the weekend would be wet.
Qualifying began in pretty wet conditions but as the track continued to dry throughout the session, Jonny’s strategy was to make sure he was in position to set his fastest lap right at the end of the session. Initially Jonny set the fourth fastest time but in the end qualified eighth after other cars found a bit more pace on the drying track.
The Sprint Race on Saturday morning provided very tricky weather conditions for Jonny and rest of the FIA Formula 3 grid, with the Spa-Francorchamps circuit being damp and still fully wet in certain areas. Starting from P5 on dry tyres, Jonny hung onto his starting position and enjoyed a number of battles with various drivers throughout the race, showcasing his race-craft. Three safety car periods meant that racing was disjointed but the D.Tolson and Sons driver put in a great performance, kept his cool and secured his best finish of the season with fourth place.
Sunday’s Feature Race saw similar conditions to Saturday, but unlike in the Sprint Race, being on the dry tyres was the wrong decision thanks to the cooler conditions and the track didn’t dry as quickly. As a result, Jonny and a number of drivers on slicks slipped down the order and out of the points.
Jonny: “Practice was difficult only doing 2 laps, but it was the right thing to do because we didn’t want to use the wets too much as we only had two sets and we knew it was going to be wet throughout the weekend. The result wasn’t great, but it was more important to get a feel for the track conditions and the car.
Qualifying was pretty wet at the start but it began to dry and it was very clear that the last lap would be the fastest one, so I just made sure on the last lap that I had a good position to take advantage of the better track conditions. The lap was okay and I was happy to be so far up the timing pages, but the cars behind me on a slightly dryer track did push me back a bit but P8 was still good.
The Sprint Race was okay, damp in some places but slicks were the way to go. Yeah, it was frustrating to have a lot of safety car time but we had a few laps of racing and to finish P4 was a good result and I was happy with that in a difficult race.
The Sunday race had similar weather but unlike the rest of the weekend when the track dried up pretty quickly it didn’t for the feature race, so we put slicks on which was the wrong decision in the end because it was so cold.
That was a big shame as qualifying and the sprint race went really well and I was happy with them, they were arguably the best of the year so I am happy with that.”
The season finale of the 2023 FIA Formula 3 Championship will take place at Monza on 01 – 03 September. The weekend’s action will be broadcast live on Sky Sports F1.
Belgian Grand Prix FIA Formula 3
P.8 J. Edgar (MP Motorsport) +0.579
P.4 J. Edgar (MP Motorsport) +1.536
P.19 J. Edgar (MP Motorsport) +45.093
FIA Formula 3 championship points after 16 races
P16 J. Edgar (MP Motorsport) 30pts