Racers prepare for British F3 season

The British Formula 3 Championship kicks off this weekend at Oulton Park with a calendar that will take the teams to the usual British tracks but also to the street circuit in Bucharest in Romania, to Monza and to Spa. The field is a healthy one with around 20 cars in the championship class and another dozen in the national class. With all the major teams now running with Mercedes power the championship is likely to be an exciting one with Raikkonen Robertson Racing running Stephen Jelley, Jonathan Kennard and Atte Mustonen and Carlin Motorsport fielding Sam Bird, Brazil's Mario Moraes and Alberto Vallerio, Maro Engel and Ireland's Niall Breen. Hitech Racing has Austria's Walter Grussmuller and Marko Asmer. Fortec Racing also hopes to be in the running with Sebastian Hohenthal from Sweden and Nigel Mansell's two sons Leo and Greg. Both still have a lot to prove to convince the racing world that they have what it takes beyond their father's connections and money and a move to F3 after one year of Formula BMW is an ambitious step.

Alan Docking has decided to stick with Honda power and will run a pair of cars for Francesco Castellacci and John Martin, while Ultimate Motorsport is entering the game with Mygale-Mercedes cars for Michael Devaney and Esteban Guerrieri.

In testing thus far Asmer has led the way with Jelley, Hohenthal and Kennard in hot pursuit. Greg Mansell was next ahead of Bird.

The good news is that the F3 field is more diverse than ever with the likes of Portuguese-Angolan Ricardo Texeira, Macau's Rodolfo Avila, South African Cristiano Morgado, Mexico's Sergio Perez, Iceland's Viktor Jensen, China's Frankie Cheng and Bahrainis Hamad Al Fardan and Salman Al Khalifa.

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