Serravalle and Pedersen join F3 Americas for Rounds 12 and 13 at Road America
F3 Americas Championship Powered by Honda visits Road America for the first time this weekend, supporting the NASCAR Xfinity Series. The 4.04-mile natural terrain road course plays host to two dramatic 35-minute rounds of racing as 12 drivers chase the title to be the next F3 Americas champion.
Global Racing Group rookie Dakota Dickerson leads the season-long points championship by nearly 100 points over second-place Jacob Abel, and could, respectively, clinch the championship by the end of the penultimate event at Road America.
““This track is perfect for the Honda powered Ligier JSF3. The long straights and high-speed corners highlight a couple of the many strengths this car has,” said Dickerson, who had competed at Road America in the past. “It’s great to be back at Road America and we will be pushing hard to grab a pair of wins this weekend in pursuit of the championship.”
But, serious competition throughout the grid is pressuring the defending F4 U.S. Championship Powered by Honda title holder’s fight to the top. Returning partial season drivers like Danish-American pilot Benjamin Pedersen and new rookies like Canadian Antionio Serravalle laid down solid times during the promoter and official test sessions on Thursday, leaving Dickerson mid-pack.
With his focus on the BRDC British Formula 3 Championship, Pedersen has only competed in two F3 Americas events, filling in for full-time GRG drivers with injuries and scheduling conflicts. His performance in five rounds, scoring three wins and two second place finishes, propelled Pedersen to third in the championship. In the opening promoter session on Thursday, Pedersen topped the result times, unofficially. While his participation in the season finale at Sebring International Raceway isn’t confirmed, his goal for this weekend is to gain as many points for his Global Racing Group team
“I’m very excited to be back for F3 Americas this weekend after coming straight from Silverstone in the British F3 Championship,” Pedersen said. “I look forward to taking what we learned at VIR and applying it here at Road America. It’s the series first time at this iconic track so we will learn as much as we can every session to get everything out of the car. I want to add as many team points to the Global Racing Group results."
Velocity Racing Driver series-newcomer Serravalle took some time off this weekend from Indy Pro 2000 Championship to try his hand in a halo-equipped F3 Americas Ligier JS F3. So far this season, Serravalle has accomplished a career-best fourth place finish on the Streets of Toronto, but is aiming for the podium in his F3 series debut. In both official practices on Thursday, Serravalle didn’t miss a beat, turning the fastest laps in both official practices with a fastest lap of 2:05.030.
"I am extremely grateful to the entire Velocity Racing Development team for this opportunity," Serravalle stated. "I am only in my second season racing cars, and I think it will be extremely beneficial to be able to hone my skills in multiple series while being able to learn from the different teams I get to work with. I have also been testing some GT3 cars for a manufacturer for the past month. It has been very rewarding to learn different cars, their attitudes and the way that they handle on the track. Also, I am meeting a ton of new people which is also great. The car was good during all four sessions today and I think we can have those same results on Friday during qualifying."
Serravalle’s Velocity Racing Development teammate Mathis Soler-Obel is also a threat to Dickerson’s championship chase. Showing speed all season, Soler-Obel honed in his skills at the last at Virginia International Raceway, ending the weekend with his first F3 career win and two second-place finishes. The young Colombian exchanged fast times with Serravalle in the pair of official practices yesterday, completing the day with the second-overall fast time of a 2:05.412, just over three tenths of a second off of his teammate’s.
"Today was good,” said Soler-Obel. “Our goal is to continue the momentum from VIR and be on top of the podium. Winning was a great feeling for me and a real morale boost for the team. I want that again.”
The F3 Americas drivers open Friday with a 30-minute qualifying followed by Race 1 at 11:05 a.m. Central. The NASCAR Xfinity weekend culminates on Sunday with the final round of F3 racing at 9:10 a.m. CT. For live timing, full race results and more information on F3, visit F3Americas.com. For post-race video highlights follow F3 Americas on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook @F3Americas.