With just days until the FIA Historic Formula 3 European Cup at Zandvoort in the Netherlands on the 6th-8th September, a large 29 car entry has been revealed for the 2019 event. The grid will feature six manufacturers, six engine tuners and drivers from all over Europe.
The entry is split into two categories. Category 1 is for cars of the 1971-1978 period and will feature 12 cars, while Category 2 will see 17 entries for the more recent 1979-1984 racers. F3 manufacturers Ralt, March, Martini, GRD, Chevron and Dallara are all represented, with Ralt the most numerous, forming just over 40% of the grid.
Both the category 2018 champions with category 1 champion Marcel Biehl returning in a category 2 1979 March 793 Toyota-Novamotor. Category 2 champion Christian Olsen will defend his 2018 title, the Dane racing in a 1983 no1 Martini Mk39 Toyota-Novamotor. A double win in the rain at the recent Silverstone Classic will put Olsen at the forefront of people’s minds to retain his title in 2019, but he will face a lot of opposition.
Christian’s father Tom is also back on the grid in the no9 Martini Mk39 Toyota-Novamotor also from 1983. Olsen Senior will be hoping that he won’t have to give up his engine to Christian as he did last year, which allowed Olsen Junior to secure the victory.
Germany’s Marcel Biehl took the Category 1 title with a class win in race 1, finishing third overall in a Ralt RT1, and 6thoverall and 3rdin class in race 2.
Another father and son duo on the entry list is Davide and Valerio Leone, who will be both hoping for better luck and an end to the mechanical woes that plagued their 2018 campaign. They return with their two March 783s each powered by a Toyota-Novamotor engine.
Frederic Rouvier, who finished 4thin race 1 and 3rdin race 2 last year, will be one of the drivers who will be challenging for the two race wins at Zandvoort, the no59 Martini MK34 TOYOTA-Novamotor built in 1981 has proven to be ultra quick with Rouvier at the wheel this season.
Angela Grasso is the only female driver on the grid and one of the eighteen entrants that took part in the inaugural FIA Historic Formula 3 European Cup in 2018. The Italian is also racing the only Dallara on the grid, a Category 2 1982 Alfa Romeo – Novamotor powered 382 chassis. In 2018 Angela raced a Category 1 Ralt RT1, finishing the weekend 16th overall and ninth in class.
Action for the 2019 FIA Historic Formula 3 European Cup will begin on Friday 6 September, with Free Practice lasting 25 minutes at 08h05 and 25 minutes of qualifying at 16h50. Race one is on Saturday between 15h50 and 16h15, with race two at 13h45 on Sunday. The results from both races will decide the class winners.
Formula 3 is a category which has been an important stepping-stone to Formula 1. The FIA Historic Formula 3 European Cup is an unique celebration of the category, its cars and history, which will be held at the same circuit where the first round of the European F3 Championship was held in 1978.