As has become expected, Team West-Tec proved to a thorn in the side of the Spanish F3 teams as the national championship took to the streets of Valencia to christen the city's new Formula One circuit.
Despite Friday's free practice session being severely restricted as finishing touches were still being applied to the circuit, all four West-Tec drivers showed well when the first session of unrestricted running finally got underway on Saturday, with 'Lightning' Jonathan Legris and Thor-Christian Ebbesvik leading the way.
Despite not finding the much older F300 as suited to the track as expected, Legris was disappointed to line up ninth after qualifying, although the result still left him comfortably the fastest of the three British drivers in the field.
A good start, however, provided the platform for the FBMW graduate to move up the order throughout the race, eventually coming to rest in a fine fifth place overall, which secured third place in the Copa de Espana class for the F306/F300 model Dallaras and maintained West-Tec's record of scoring at least one podium in every Spanish F3 weekend that it has ever taken part in.
"Jonathan was stunning again – in fact, the team are starting to become immune to realising just how significant his achievements are in the F300!" team principal Gavin Wills enthused.
The finish also put Legris on the front row for the second race of the weekend and the Briton responded well, leading for a short while on the opening lap before settling in to a steady third overall. What wasn't apparent, however, was that he was already suffering with gearbox maladies and a misfire.
After dropping down to sixth place over the next few laps, Legris was eventually forced to retire to the pits as the misfire worsened. The team quickly traced the problem to an ignition coil but, by then, it was all too late. What was particularly galling was the coil was brand new on Friday as the team routinely replaced a lifed component...
"The first race was great, and to finish on the podium here was a special experience," Legris said, "Race two was obviously more disappointing, but I am sure we will be on the pace when we return."
Despite the retirement, the youngster maintains a competitive position in the overall
championship standings, just 14 points off the outright lead, despite competing in a car six and eight years older than many of his rivals'.