Carlin’s Zak O’Sullivan is on the cusp of winning the 2021 GB3 Championship, following yet more strong results at Oulton Park last time out.
The 16-year-old Brit, a potential finalist in this year’s Aston Martin Autosport BRDC Young Driver of the Year Award, very nearly wrapped up the crown at Oulton Park, falling just four points short of securing his maiden car racing title with the triple header at Donington in October still to come.
But fate denied him the opportunity after going wheel to wheel with old F4 sparring partner Luke Browning, with race two drama between the pair forcing the series leader out of the race.
O’Sullivan had claimed a double pole in qualifying, and dominated the first race of the weekend to claim his fifth win of the year and edge even closer to claiming the championship.
But after being beaten off the line at the start of race two, O’Sullivan then closely pursued Browning for the next 10 laps, making a move for the lead late in the race. But after making slight contact with his rival, he skated over the grass at the Hislops chicane and into the barriers.
“I wanted to win the race more than taking the championship early,” he surmised. “Luke was slow and making a lot of mistakes so I wanted to get by him and I took my opportunity. It’s one of the challenges of this championship – drivers drop in for one-off races knowing the championship contenders can’t take any risks racing them. I wasn’t going to be intimidated.”
That left O’Sullivan needing a big points swing in his favour in race three, and when the clouds burst and the track was soaked, he sensed an opportunity.
He climbed from 16th on the grid to sixth in the race, but Ayrton Simmons and Christian Mansell scored just enough points to deny O’Sullivan an early coronation.
“Race three was quite eventful, the rain just came out of nowhere before the start. The gaps seemed to open for me over the first few laps and I got up to sixth. After that I was just running to the speed of the guy in front.”
He now holds a 112-point gap to Simmons and 115–points to Mansell, and will likely only need to finish the first race at Donington without incident to claim the title. He added; “it’s a bit of an odd situation but it seems to be a theme in my career! I’ve done most of the hard work and am really happy with where we are.”
20 October 2021 - Runner-up Simmons: “I left it all out on the track!”
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18 October 2021 - Champion O’Sullivan “really looking forward” to FIA F3 test prize
17 October 2021 - Race three: Grundtvig grabs victory in final 2021 race
17 October 2021 - What they said: Donington Park race three
17 October 2021 - Final Donington race starts at 16.00 – Grundtvig on pole