Bent Viscaal rounded off his maiden season in FIA Formula 3 in Sochi, Russia, as he recorded his best qualifying result since Austria and finished the year 15th in the Drivers’ Championship.
Getting his race weekend underway on Friday, Bent used the round’s practice session to get up to speed with the 5.8-kilometre Russian circuit. Enjoying a positive start to the weekend, Bent finished the first session of the weekend in 19th place.
Improving on his time in qualifying, Bent was able to shave off over a second and a half from his time in practice as he secured 14th place on the grid for Saturday’s race - his 3rd best qualifying of the season.
On Saturday, weather conditions at the Sochi Autodrom were far from easy and the circuit was still damp after rainfall overnight and rainfall during the race. Unfortunately for Bent, the wet surface proved to be his downfall as he slipped on the kerbs on the second lap and crashed into the wall, ending his race.
Looking to bounce back from Saturday’s disappointment, Bent lined the grid from 28th for Sunday’s race but it didn’t take him long before he was moving forward and at the end of the second lap, Bent had climbed seven places to be running in 21st place.
Continuing his sensational fightback, Bent reached the halfway point of the race running in 18th and was within striking distance of his team-mate Keyvan Andres. The HWA RACELAB pair were locked into a fight which saw them both leave the track briefly with Bent eventually getting the upper hand.
On the final lap of the season, Bent pulled together a fantastic final lap to overtake two more cars and finish in 14th but he was later hit with a five-second penalty, which ultimately saw him classified in 17th place.
"The first race was over in a flash after my crash in turn five. Starting from 28th place on Sunday was a real challenge. However, I did make it as high as 14th place. Although I ultimately had to settle for 17th place after a time penalty, we still made great progress.”
“Today's race has definitely made me hungry for more. The season had its highs and lows. My best result came at the start of the season, with fifth place at Paul Ricard. I struggled a bit after that, but race two in Sochi was a positive way to end the season. I can now head into the winter break with a good feeling. I have learned an awful lot and am already looking forward to next year. I would like to thank the whole team for everything they have done for me this season. I am incredibly grateful for the support."