Red Bull Junior Blomqvist retires from fifth in the Masters of F3 showpiece

PUBLISHED: 18:10 09 July 2013 | UPDATED: 18:10 09 July 2013

Red Bull Junior driver Tom Blomqvist was forced to retire from the prestigious Masters of F3 at Zandvoort with three laps to go.

Red Bull Junior driver Tom Blomqvist was forced to retire from the prestigious Masters of F3 at Zandvoort with three laps to go.

Dutch Photo Agency/Red Bull Content Pool

TOM Blomqvist’s return to action ended in disappointing fashion at the prestigious Masters of F3 race after a slipping clutch forced him to retire from fifth place with just three laps to go.

The Red Bull Junior driver was competing in the mid-season showpiece event at Zandvoort in Holland following a five-week break in the FIA Formula 3 European Championship calendar.

Nineteen-year-old Blomqvist said afterwards that the change from Hankook tyres – used in European F3 – to Kumho tyres for the non-championship event may have been a factor in his Eurointernational team’s struggle for optimum performance.

“We struggled a bit with pace throughout the weekend,” the Saffron Walden racer said. “I felt I was driving as hard as possible, pushing all the time and getting everything I could from the car.

“Perhaps we struggled to get on top of the Kumho tyres, it’s hard to say but we were just not quite there.”

Blomqvist had two good qualifying sessions but it was the fastest time he set in the morning which gave him his final grid position.

He added: “In the first qualifying session I was seventh, in the afternoon I was sixth but the morning had been a little bit faster so I was P7 on the grid.

“I then messed up the start a bit. I was too aggressive and I lost some positions on the jump away from the line. I quickly got them back though so was in my original seventh at the end of the first lap.

“I was running seventh for a couple of laps then the two guys ahead of me came together and that gave me fifth.”

The race was won by Swede Felix Rosenqvist, with Dunmow’s Alex Lynn second and fellow Brit Emil Bernstorff third.

Attention now turns to the Norisring street circuit in Germany this weekend when the drivers resume battle for the coveted Formula One test drive with Ferrari – the prize for winning the FIA F3 European Championship.

Blomqvist, who is sixth in the standings on 94.5 points, was optimistic about his team’s chances, adding: “So we are at the Norisring next weekend, a very different place and we’ve got the chance to have a very different weekend.”

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