It was a mixed weekend for Sam in the Cooper Tires British Formula 3 event around the iconic Spa Francorchamps circuit in Belgium. Sam completed a last minute deal to join the Carlin Formula 3 team in the older spec Dallara-VW for the race weekend, alongside some of the faster FIA Formula 3 contenders who were contesting in the British series for the first time. A tough practice session on Thursday saw Sam’s car struggling for initial pace as the team experimented with setup ideas. However, when qualifying arrived on Friday, Sam set the third fastest time of the British F3 runners and was in optimistic mood ahead of the first of three races. Commenting on the race weekend, Sam explained: “Racing at Spa is an amazing and unique experience and it is a fantastic place to compete. It was great to be with Carlin for the first time and to work with and learn from a new group of talented and experienced engineers and mechanics, and we worked hard together to develop the set up of the car throughout the weekend. Lining up with the faster FIA cars was always going to be difficult so to be right on the pace in qualifying was very positive. As it turned out incidents at the start made all three races tough, and from that perspective this has to be one of the hardest race weekends so far. Being a rookie in F3 I am learning a huge amount and importantly making progress, which is my goal for this year.”
Sam’s next outing will be in Japanese Formula 3, where he has been invited to compete at the Motegi Raceway for Toda Motorsport on 23–24 August. He then returns to Germany for the ATS Formula 3 Cup which resumes at the Nurburgring on the 29-31 August. He currently lies in second place in the rookie standings in German F3 with four rounds to go, and remains in third place in the British F3 standings.