Menasheh IdafarTeenage British Formula 3 competitor Menasheh Idafar made an impressive start to the third race weekend of the 2010 season at Magny-Cours in France today, Friday, 21st May, after comfortably setting the National Class pace during pre-event testing.

Menasheh, who drives a Mugen-Honda powered Dallara F307 for Brackley-based T-Sport, produced a highly competitive showing on his first ever visit to the former home of the FIA Formula One World Championship’s French Grand Prix by posting a quickest time of 1m35.539 seconds (166.21mph).

Completing a total of 49 laps of the 4.4-kilometre venue during this afternoon’s three hour session, the 19-year-old F3 rookie headed National Class championship leader James Cole by eight 10ths of a second and was also within 0.2 seconds of the overall top 10 in 12th place.

“Today’s been good, it was great to be competitive on my first ever time at Magny-Cours”, said the British-born Bahraini, “ We did a lot of work today, it was a good start to the weekend, so hopefully we can qualify well tomorrow and go on to have three strong races.”

Today’s action marked the start of two, back-to-back weekends of racing in Europe for the Cooper Tires British F3 International Series competitors with the home of Formula One’s German Grand Prix, Hockenheim, hosting rounds 10, 11 and 12 of the season on 28th/29th/30th May.

Returning to this weekend’s action, qualifying at Magny-Cours will take place at 10.15 (local time) tomorrow, Saturday, 22nd May, with the first of the weekend’s races – round seven – following at around 14.00. On Sunday, 23rd May, round eight will get underway at 09.15 with round nine expected to commence at approximately 15.40.

2010 Cooper Tires British F3 International Series ‘National Class’ standings:
1st James Cole, 86pts; 2nd Menasheh Idafar, 61pts

Photo by Jakob Ebrey Photography.