Three races…three different winners! Soldafini, Trojani and Le Gallet each won one of the three rounds of the Estoril Grand Prix in Portugal, the fourth event of the 2023 Ultimate Cup Series season.
The champions of the Ultimate Cup Series single-seater grid did not have an easy day on Saturday 9 September 2023 due to the rain and fog that incredibly shaped the start of the competition at the Portuguese Estoril Circuit at the gates of Lisbon.
Fortunately, weather conditions improved a lot after that.
The qualifying session therefore took place in the rain on Friday afternoon, and at the end of it, the championship leader, Paul Trojani, in the No. 21 Graff Racing F3R, was able to take the first two positions.
Qualifying ultimately provided good practice for the first race, on Saturday morning, in rain showers and thick fog.
In these particularly difficult circumstances, one driver was able to excel. This is Juan Francisco Soldafini Norris, originally from Argentina and only 16 years old who won the first race, despite his first participation in F3R. Thus, the driver appointed by the Virage team prevailed over the first-place finisher.
Despite his defeat in the first race, Paul Trojani managed to rally his strength during the second race, in a tense confrontation with Gaspard Le Gallet, driver of the No. 15 CMR F3R.
Despite the previous difficulties he faced in defeating his main rival in the tournament, the Helvetian did not give up.
Quite the opposite, because in the third race, he finally won thanks to a bold maneuver at the start, followed by complete control of the race, thus winning the final showdown of the Portuguese weekend.
Juan Francisco Soldafini of Argentina is enthusiastically confident about the end of his experience in the final cup series and achieving his first victory:
“Overall I’m very satisfied with this weekend. This was my first time in a Formula 3 race in a FRECA car. I mean it’s not the biggest championship, but overall there were some good drivers, and being able to compete with them gave me a lot of experience, “Which is what I really need at this stage. So, yeah, overall, I had a good pace on the weekend and I was consistent. I’m overall happy with my performance, very happy with the team, and I want to thank them for everything they do.”
Regarding the F3R Ultimate classification, there was a big battle in the middle of the peloton, most notably between Frédéric Puillot. (motorsports racing) And Walter Rickart (Formula Motorsport).
The first city won the first race, while the Swiss were victorious in the other two matches.
The next stage will be held in France, at the Nevers Magny-Cours circuit, on October 27, 28 and 29, for the penultimate round of the season.
Photos: Davey Dillin