After clinching the Formula Renault 3.5 Series title on Saturday Kevin Magnussen (DAMS) followed by securing pole number eight of the year and victory number five. Second behind the Dane was championship runner-up Stoffel Vandoorne (Fortec Motorsports), with Will Stevens (P1 by Strakka Racing) third.
Kevin Magnussen enjoyed another fine morning, equalling Daniel Ricciardo’s record of eight poles in a single season. At the end of a session interrupted by fog, the Dane qualified ahead of Stoffel Vandoorne, Arthur Pic (AV Formula) and Will Stevens.
Arthur Pic made a flying start from third to put Kevin Magnussen under immediate pressure, though the Frenchman went back to where he started when Stoffel Vandoorne passed him on lap two. The Belgian tucked in behind Kevin Magnussen, with Arthur Pic and Nico Muller (International Draco Racing) in his wake.
Nico Muller was the first of the front four to head into the pits for the obligatory tyre change on lap eight, the Swiss rejoining the race behind Will Stevens, who had gone in a lap earlier. There was no catching Kevin Magnussen and Stoffel Vandoorne, who bolted on new tyres on laps nine and ten respectively, while Arthur Pic’s decision to pit on lap 12 did not bring him any reward. The Frenchman’s race ended shortly afterwards when he made an unsuccessful attempt to get past Norman Nato (DAMS) and ran off.
Marco Sorensen (Lotus) was the last member of the leading bunch to come in on lap 16, with Kevin Magnussen regaining the lead and surging to another win from Stoffel Vandoorne and Will Stevens. Nico Muller was fourth, ahead of Norman Nato, Carlos Sainz (Zeta Corse) and Marco Sorensen, with Nigel Melker (Tech 1 Racing), Marlon Stockinger (Lotus) and Oliver Webb (Fortec Motorsports) eventually coming in to complete the top ten.
What they said
Kevin Magnussen: “It’s been a fantastic day for me. The car’s been performing pretty much the same all year but today it was nothing short of amazing. It’s a great way to end a magnificent season. I don’t think I can thank Dams enough for putting their faith in me and for everything they’ve given me.”
Stoffel Vandoorne: “I had better pace than yesterday. I didn’t get off to a good start, but I managed to get second place back quickly and put Kevin under pressure. It wasn’t enough because he had a very good strategy for the end of the race. I still don’t know what my future’s going to be, but I’ve got faith in McLaren.”
Will Stevens: “I was disappointed with fourth in qualifying because the car is better than that. I was aiming for fourth place in the championship. We knew the first seven laps would be difficult but that everything would go better after that, once the new tyres were on.”