PREMA Racing showed good pace today at Silverstone in qualifying for round 4 of the 2019 FIA Formula 3 Championship. The tough British venue, recently repaved and improved, saw an extremely hard-fought session result in a tight-knit grid for tomorrow's feature race.
After starting strong in his first run, New Zealander Marcus Armstrong suffered from a minor off in his second attempt and had to make the most of his second and final push lap. He made the most of the situation with P2 and will start from the front row tomorrow.
Not too far from him, Indian Jehan Daruvala posted a positive third place despite troubles in the tire warning procedure for his second run. The 20-year-old racer did an impressive job in putting his lap together at the last gasp.
Last but not least, Robert Shwartzman experienced considerable progress throughout the session after dealing with car balance issues. A prompt set-up change improved the situation and he was great in maximizing his chances, climbing up to the sixth position. With a further step towards the front, he will be able, as well as his three teammates, to contend for podium or victory.
# 26 - Marcus Armstrong
"Qualifying was alright, we were very fast in the first run. Then in the second, I made a mistake when the tires were at their best. I was under pressure for the final stages and I did quite an alright lap. I'm a bit disappointed to miss pole but overall I'm happy to be on the front row again. Now we can fight tomorrow."
# 27 - Jehan Daruvala
"It hasn't been one of the easiest qualifying sessions we had so far and ending up P3 I'm really happy. The run with the first set went quite smoothly. In the first push, I was first, and in the second I was fourth, but I lost the rears in the second and third sector. For the second run, we changed the balance to help me with that and I changed the tire warm-up procedure. Honestly, I didn't do a good job with that and my fronts weren't ready for the first push. So I decided not to take a lot of life out of the tires and go around at a reasonable pace. I knew the last lap was the only lap that was going to matter as I was 10th to 12th. The pressure was on but the lap was good despite not maximizing the high-speed. I'm happy to start third and we will have the chance to win again."
# 28 - Robert Shwartzman
"Qualifying didn't go as we expected. I experienced some balance issues at the start, especially in the fast corners. We changed something after the first set to help with the balance and it was definitely better. We went back out and did two fine laps, not great but quite OK. P6 is definitely not what I wanted though. If we did a better job in free practice, we would have scored a better lap time as I did not have many laps to adapt to the new balance. We hope to fight for the podium tomorrow!"