Bortoleto clinches the feature win after Leader Mini takes a penalty

Hitech rider Mini was third at the end of lap one after being passed off the line by Bortoleto (Trident) and Gregoire Saucy (ART).

He reclaimed second place from Saucy on lap four before passing Bortoleto for the lead on lap 10 but was handed a five-second penalty for violating the starting procedure.

Mini had looked set to retain at least fourth place before a safety car on the penultimate lap ended his chances, erasing his lead and handing Bortoleto the win.

The Brazilian led a trident 2-1 ahead of fellow rookie Oliver Goethe while an audibly frustrated Mini was relegated to eighth place by the penalty, yelled over the radio and banged into his steering wheel after an unlucky race.

Bortoleto was second and took the lead at Turn 1 as Saucy moved ahead of Mini in second at Turn 4.

He extended a 2.1 second lead over Saucy as the ART returnee struggled with Mini behind and the Alpine Academy rider eventually passed Saucy around the outside of Turn 4 on lap four.

Bortoleto had doubled his lead on lap six before the safety car was deployed. Tommy Smith spun his Van Amersfoort Racing car at Turn 8 while Mari Boya (MP Motorsport) also suffered a front wing failure after awkwardly driving into the Australian.

Racing resumed on lap 10, with Mini taking the lead at Turns 6 and 7 from Bortoleto as he set about building up enough distance to maintain the lead, as was the case during the pause in action that saw the Italian received his punishment.

The safety car was called out for the second time on the penultimate lap after Smith and Roberto Faria made contact, ending Smith’s race and ending Mini’s chances of winning.

Second-placed Goethe passed Saucy with seven laps to go in third place to take the final podium spot at Turn 1 before being promoted to second to cap a strong result for Trident.

Reigning European Formula Regional Champion Dino Beganovic finished third for Prema and claimed his first podium of the series after passing Saucy late in the event.

On the penultimate lap, a slacking Saucy had been caught by Beganovic and Luke Browning, with the former advancing to fourth while Saucy stayed in fifth.

Saucy was fourth after Mini’s penalty while Browning finished fifth for Hitech after a superb race after storming through the field from 17th place.

Sprint race winner Pepe Marti was sixth for Campos with ART’s Kaylen Frederick seventh. Sebastian Montoya was ninth for Hitech while Paul Aron rounded out the top 10 after a race-long skirmish with Prema teammate Zak O’Sullivan.

F3 returns in Melbourne, Australia from March 31st to April 2nd.

F3 Bahrain presents race results – 22 laps

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