Top ten for Martinius in qualifying in Australia


Making a huge jump after his debut F3 event in Bahrain three weeks ago, Martinius Stenshorne put his Hitech Pulse Eight car into the top ten of qualifying for the second round of the FIA Formula 3 Championship in Melbourne, Australia.

The young Norwegian put in a lap of 1:34.095, the 11thquickest time around the 5,278km Albert Park circuit. With the top 12 reversed for Saturday’s Sprint, Martinius will start on the front row of the grid for the 20 lap race, giving every opportunity to secure his first points of the year.

Martinius used the earlier Free Practice session to get up to speed on the dusty, challenging track, with a best time of 1:35.296 after 17 laps. On his first run in the later 30 minute qualifying session he had improved on his earlier time, however he made a massive jump on his second attempt, moving into the top five.

When the red flag came out under five minutes to the end following an incident for Sami Meguetounif there was opportunity for Martinius to capitalise. Overcrowding on track was a real issue when the session resumed, leaving Martinius’ earlier time looking strong. Some did improve, but his time was good enough for P10. With adjustments for other drivers post qualifying, Martinius was demoted to P11, placing him second on the grid for the Sprint Race start with a huge opportunity to get the points counter started.

The Sprint race will start at 11:15am local time on Saturday, with the longer Feature race underway in Sunday at 09:05am.