Ben Banicoat has taken his first European Formula 3 Championship win at the Hungaroring after capitalising on early leaders Max Gunther and George Russell eliminating themselves in a controversial collision.

With sodden conditions making the Hungarian circuit treacherous and forcing a safety car start, pole sitter Gunther set off in the lead by lap three from Sergio Sette Camara and George Russell.

However, when Camara dropped back with a spin at the final corner on the opening lap, the Briton set about putting pressure on the front runner, aided when Gunther himself ran wide on lap three at turn 12 to close up the gap.

Their tussle would come to a head on lap five when Russell attempted to pass at turn 11, but though he was well alongside, he'd drift wide and clip Gunther's Prema car. With Gunther sliding into the barriers and out of the race, Russell was also left with suspension damage, forcing him into the pits and retirement.

Their exit would promote Racing Steps Foundation-backed Hitch driver Barnicoat into a lead he would control to the finish line, seeing off a pack led by Joey Eriksson, who couldn't keep up with his rival once the race went green again following another safety car.

Though Gunther retains his championship lead, a third place for Lance Stroll sees him close the gap at the top to his Prema team-mate, the Canadian getting the better of Guanyu Zhou after a lengthy battle, while Camara recovered to fifth after his earlier off.

Callum Illot followed home in sixth, ahead of Pedro Piquet, Niko Kari, Nick Cassidy - who spun at the start of the race as the safety car pulled in - and Harrison Newey completed the top ten.

Elsewhere, there was disappointment for race one winner Ralf Aron, who failed to start after his car stopped on the sighting lap.

 

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