Mick Schumacher debuts in 2017 F3 Macau Grand Prix
In a race win that could aptly be described as “lucky”, Daniel Ticktum in a Dallara Volkswagen Formula 3, snatched the win in Macau from the battling pair of Camara and Habsbrug in the final corner of the last lap of the Macau GP.
Every November, the gambling city of Macau is transformed into one of the most demanding street circuits and this year’s 64th running of the Macau GP was no different. From the FIA GT World Cup, FIA WTCC, Macau Motorcycle GP, Macau Touring Cup to the Chinese Racing Cup, the Guia circuit has given the motorsports world another nail-biting weekend. If you thought Monaco was bad, the Macau GP is conidered much more difficult. Crashing is a regular feature in the tight and twisty Guia circuit as Saturday saw a fatality in the Macau Motorcycle GP; British rider, Daniel Hagerty, took a violent highside and was flung from his bike onto the armco, bringing the race to a stop. Riders, teams, and everyone in attendance were stunned with the turn of events, with race control canceling the remaining races for Saturday.
Even with the cloud of grief hovering above the circuit, all drivers and riders took to the circuit for all of Sundays races.
The FIA Formula 3 GP is the main draw in Macau; this year saw Mick Schumacher, son of F1 champ Michael Schumacher, make his debut, and just like his dad, the young German wanted to leave his name etched in the record books; sadly, Mick was unable to finish the race but not before registering the fastest lap time around the Guia circuit.
Starting the race in P7, Ticktum, kept his nose clean at the start, while his Motopark team-mate Joel Erikson took the lead ahead of Callum llot after Lisboa. Carnage soon followed, as both Erikson and llot tangled on lap 3, taking them out of the race. This gave Motopark driver, Sergio Sette Camara the lead with Maximilian Gunter of Prema Powerteam and Ferdinand Habsburg, who was driving for Carlin the top 3 spots, After the wreckage was removed, racing resumed with Gunther and Habsbrug fighting for P2, then in a move deemed by many as the pass of the race, Habsbrug got the slipstream from Gunther and take P2. The Austrian then hunted down Sette Camara for the lead. Down the order, Gunther, Norris and Ticktum were battling for the final podium spot; then in the run to Lisboa, the trio went three abreast with the late-braking Daniel Ticktum passing Gunther and Norris for P3.
On the final lap, Sergio Sette Camara held on to a slim lead, but Ferdinand Habsbrug had no plans of coming in 2nd. Habsbrug got the slipstream and passed Sette Camara on reservoir straight, unfortunately, Sergio was on the dirty side of the track and understeered into the barrier on the final corner, similarly, Habsbrug, who carried too much speed found the barrier at the exit of turn 23. This benefited Daniel Ticktum who crossed the line to take the checkered flag and the win in Macau.
In only his 3rd career Formula 3 race (first in Hockenhein and Macau GP 2016) the 18 year old Ticktum from the UK takes the biggest win of his young career. Lando Norris took 2nd while Ralf Aron taking 3rd, and despite with only 3 wheels on the ground, Ferdinand Habsbrug limped home in 4th.
In the other disciplines, Macau GP veteran, Edoardo Mortara is now a 6 time winner (twice in F3, & a 4 time GT winner) in the Guia Circuit, Mortara took the Mercedes AMG to the top step of the podium in the SJM Macau GT Cup. While Rob Huff took his 9th victory in Macau, making Huff the winningest driver in the history of the Guia circuit, besting the record of Michael Rutter who had 8 wins in the Motorcycle Grand Prix. Huff won the FIA WTCC convincingly, from pole, over Norbert Michelisz in the Honda, who finished 8.1 seconds behind the Citroen C-Elysee of Huff.