F3 start, Sochi Autodrom, 2019

Shwartzman clinches F3 title after losing home win on last lap

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Robert Shwartzman has won the Formula 3 championship despite losing victory in his home race at Sochi Autodrom on the final lap.

Marcus Armstrong passed his Prema team at the start of the final lap to score his third win of the year. But Shwartzman, already a three-time winner this year, clinched the title with third place in the penultimate round of the season.

The pair swapped the lead multiple times in the race after Armstrong took the lead from pole-sitter Shwartzman at the start. The race was disrupted by a series of Virtual Safety Car and Safety Car interruptions early on as intermittent rain fall caused several of their rivals to spin out.

Shwartzman, a Ferrari Driver Academy member, went into the final race weekend of the year with a 33-point lead over team mate Jehan Daruvala. However Daruvala, who started alongside Shwartzman on the front row, dropped back early on in the race and lost touch with his championship rival.

Shwartzman is the first driver to win the championship since it was rebranded from the GP3 series last year. Previous GP3 champions who reached F1 include George Russell (2017), Charles Leclerc (2016), Esteban Ocon (2015), Daniil Kvyat (2013), Valtteri Bottas (2011) and Esteban Gutierrez (2010).

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Keith Collantine
Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...

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