F3 Cup heads to Donington park

01/04/2011 - The F3 Cup moves to Donington Park this weekend and is joined by a new driver: Louis Hamilton-Smith.

01/04/2011 - The F3 Cup moves to Donington Park this weekend and is joined by a new driver: Louis Hamilton-Smith. He will be facing the very quick Aaron Steele in the Grays Motosport Dallara F302. Aaron dominated both the Snetterton races, and came away with the outright circuit record for the demanding new Snetterton 300 track.

Judging by his exceptional pace and polish at Snetterton Aaron looks to be a formidable prospect throughout the year, but he can expect stronger opposition from Chris Needham's DST Group supported car this weekend. A very experienced F3 campaigner, Chris wasn't able to test at all before the first round, but never-the-less came away with a brace of second places. The F3 Cup, which is a new series to MSVR in 2011, again sees a strong entry expected to take part this weekend.

Hopefully the entry will be joined by Lanan Racing's Mark Terry, who experienced a hair-raising start line accident at Snetterton - these cars are very fast and when something goes wrong there is very little margin for error.

The F3 Cup is a series of stand alone races, so Championship points are not awarded, but there will be a very valuable Formula Two test drive available to the competitor judged to be the most meritorious driver of the season. The judging panel includes MSV's Chief Executive Jonathan together with a group of experienced senior journalists and motor racing commentators.

All but one of this weekend's entry is Dallara mounted, the exception being James Ledamun in the sole Class B entry, the interesting TOMS 036F sponsored by TRS Harnesses. In Class A brothers Mark and Neil Harrison are both running Toyota Xtec engines in their Magic Motorsport cars, and Mark Bailey Racing have a pair of cars run for Nick Robinson and Stuart Wiltshire.

Richard Purcell in the Topmarx car will be busy since he has another car running in the Monoposto race. Other well established F3 competitors here today are Dave Karaskas, now in a Class A Dallara Spiess. Philip Austin in the Hartley Hire Mitsubishi Xtec engined F398 will be hoping for a better run after a frustrating radiator failure hampered his race at Snetterton.

Click here for the F3 Cup entry list.