Marcus Ready for a Strong F3 Campaign
Heading back to Europe after a competitive start to the year out in his native New Zealand, Marcus Armstrong is revved and ready to tackle the 2018 season, completing a positive pre-season test schedule, the Kiwi driver will make his debut in the fiercely competitive FIA Formula 3 European Championship in just a few weeks time.
Teaming up with Prema once more, the Italian squad with whom he celebrated Italian F4 title honours last year, Marcus is well poised in the hunt for victory when the season gets underway.
Hitting the ground running on the first day of testing at the Hungaroring, Marcus soon displayed his skills against more experienced drivers. Taking to the 4.3km track for his first official outing at the wheel of his F3 challenger, the Kiwi driver topped the timings early on, finishing the day in third on the timesheet and the best placed rookie in the field. Growing in confidence in the car and the team, Marcus further placed comfortably within the Top 10 at the end of the two-day test.
Moving across to the picturesque Styrian hills in Austria, the 23 drivers were put to the test at the 4.3km Red Bull Ring. With outright pace not the only focus throughout the testing period, the teams set to work understanding setup and performance ahead of the 2018 season, whilst also dealing with the changeable weather conditions. The Italian team however still proved themselves as the ones to beat, topping the time sheets at the end of the second official test. Despite snowfall holding running to a minimum, Marcus still showed strong pace finishing in seventh overall.
Finalising the test programme, the field took to the track at Misano this week, a new addition to the calendar for 2018. With rapid pace in their first outing, Marcus once more gave a taster of his potential for the season ahead, comfortably holding his place within the Top 10. As the session ran on, teams opted for used tyres and collecting valuable data over outright pace, keen to keep their cards close to their chest ahead of the season opener.
Fresh from a strong test for the team, Marcus is filled with confidence for the season ahead:
“We’ve had a good test, we were quick immediately, but we didn’t show our maximum potential toward the end of the test here in Misano, I think that’s the same for everybody.
Overall I’m confident and really happy with the car, it feels quick. Back with the team, I see a lot of similarities to last season in F4, which is positive”
The FIA Formula 3 European Championship kicks off on the streets of Pau, France on 12-13th May, where Ferrari protégé, Marcus, will look to show his true potential and start his championship campaign strong.