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1989 British Formula Three season

1989 British Formula Three season
Previous: 1988 Next: 1990

The 1989 British Formula Three season was the 39th season of the British Formula Three Championship, starting at Thruxton on 27 March and concluding there on 15 October after 16 races.

The title battle was largely fought between two sportscar racing stars of the future - West Surrey Racing's Allan McNish and Bowman Racing's David Brabham, both driving Ralt chassis. The former was initially declared champion at the end of the season as a result of Brabham being disqualified from his second-place finish the ninth round of the season at Silverstone and being penalised a further 18 points due to an irregularity with his Volkswagen engine. However, Brabham's points was reinstated following a court hearing in early 1990, giving him the title by a margin of 10 points over McNish.[1]

Other notable drivers in the field included future BTCC champions Rickard Rydell (who would contest the championship again two years later) and Alain Menu, and future Formula One stars Mika Häkkinen and Mika Salo, who would go on to be the title protagonists in 1990.

1989 proved a high-water mark for the series in terms of entry numbers, which regularly exceeded 40 cars. The result of this was the creation of qualifying heats at certain rounds in order to slim the field down prior to the main race. It was also the first year for the Neil Brown Engineering-tuned Mugen-Honda engine, used by McNish among others, which would power all but one British F3 champion from 1990 to 2006. Class B was won by Fernando Plata in a year-old VW-powered Ralt.

Race calendar and results

Round Circuit Date Pole Position Fastest Lap Winning Driver Winning Team Class B Winner
1 Thruxton 27 March 23x15px Rickard Rydell 23x16px Alain Menu 23x15px Rickard Rydell
  1. REDIRECT Template:Country data Republic of Ireland Eddie Jordan Racing
23x15px Eddie Kimbell
2 Silverstone 9 April 23x15px David Brabham 23x16px Alain Menu 23x15px David Brabham 23x15px Bowman Racing 23x15px Craig Simmiss
31 Brands Hatch 23 April 23x15px Mika Häkkinen 23x15px Mika Häkkinen 23x15px David Brabham 23x15px Bowman Racing 23x15px Ken Bowes
4 Silverstone 1 May 23x15px Steve Robertson
  1. REDIRECT Template:Country data Republic of Ireland Derek Higgins
  1. REDIRECT Template:Country data Republic of Ireland Derek Higgins
23x15px West Surrey Racing 23x15px Fernando Plata
5 Brands Hatch 21 May 23x15px Mika Häkkinen 23x15px Otto Rensing 23x15px David Brabham 23x15px Bowman Racing 23x15px Fernando Plata
6 Thruxton 29 May
  1. REDIRECT Template:Country data Republic of Ireland Derek Higgins
  1. REDIRECT Template:Country data Republic of Ireland Derek Higgins
23x15px Allan McNish 23x15px West Surrey Racing 23x15px Fernando Plata
7 Silverstone 4 June 23x15px Allan McNish 23x15px Rickard Rydell 23x15px Allan McNish 23x15px West Surrey Racing 23x15px Fernando Plata
8 Donington Park 2 July 23x15px Rickard Rydell 23x15px Allan McNish 23x15px Allan McNish 23x15px West Surrey Racing 23x15px Warwick Rooklyn
9 Silverstone 15 July 23x15px David Brabham 23x15px Mika Häkkinen 23x15px Allan McNish 23x15px West Surrey Racing 23x15px Fernando Plata
101 Snetterton 6 August 23x15px David Brabham 23x15px David Brabham 23x15px Paul Stewart 23x15px Paul Stewart Racing 23x15px Fernando Plata
11 Oulton Park 13 August 23x15px David Brabham 23x15px David Brabham 23x15px David Brabham 23x15px Bowman Racing 23x15px Fernando Plata
12 Silverstone 28 August 23x15px David Brabham
  1. REDIRECT Template:Country data Republic of Ireland Derek Higgins
23x15px David Brabham 23x15px Bowman Racing 23x15px Warwick Rooklyn
13 Brands Hatch 3 September 23x15px Philippe Adams 23x15px Allan McNish 23x15px Philippe Adams 23x15px Bowman Racing 23x15px Warwick Rooklyn
14 Donington Park 17 September 23x15px David Brabham 23x15px Steve Robertson 23x15px Steve Robertson 23x15px Bowman Racing 23x15px Scott Stringfellow
15 Silverstone 7 October 23x15px Allan McNish 23x15px Allan McNish 23x15px David Brabham 23x15px Bowman Racing 23x15px Warwick Rooklyn
16 Thruxton 15 October 23x15px Allan McNish
  1. REDIRECT Template:Country data Republic of Ireland Derek Higgins
23x15px Allan McNish 23x15px West Surrey Racing 23x15px Warwick Rooklyn

^1 These races were shortened due to accidents.

Championship Standings

Class A

Pos. Driver Team Points
1 23x15px David Brabham Bowman Racing 80
2 23x15px Allan McNish West Surrey Racing 70
3
  1. REDIRECT Template:Country data Republic of Ireland Derek Higgins
West Surrey Racing 46
4 23x15px Rickard Rydell Eddie Jordan Racing 35
5 23x15px Steve Robertson Bowman Racing 27
6 23x15px Philippe Adams Bowman Racing 23
7 23x15px Mika Häkkinen Dragon Motorsport 18
8 23x16px Alain Menu Racefax Motorsport 16
9 23x15px Otto Rensing Paul Stewart Racing 15
10 23x15px Paul Stewart Paul Stewart Racing 13
11 23x15px John Alcorn Becsport 12
12 23x15px Gary Ayles Jack Brabham Racing 11
13 23x15px Jason Elliott Paul Stewart Racing
Swallow Racing
11
14 23x15px Mika Salo Alan Docking Racing 10
15 23x15px Niclas Schönström Swallow Racing 9
16 23x15px Gary Ward RGS Motorsport 6
17 23x15px Julian Westwood Racefax Motorsport 5
18 23x15px Paul Warwick Intersport 3
19 23x15px John Estupiñan Bowman Racing 3
20 23x15px António Simões Dawson Auto Developments 3

Class B

Pos. Driver Team Points
1 23x15px Fernando Plata Bowman Racing 89
2 23x15px Warwick Rooklyn Bowman Racing 68
3 23x15px Scott Stringfellow Jim Lee Racing 68
4 23x15px Eddie Kimbell Peter Lea Racing 32
5 23x15px Craig Simmiss CS Engineering 27
6 23x15px Stephen Hepworth Driver 25
7 23x15px Ken Bowes Hi-Tech Motor Sports Development 24
8 23x15px Chad Wentzel Hubbard Racing 15
9 23x15px Lindoro da Silva START Racing
Hi-Tech Motor Sports Development
10
10 23x15px Dominic Chappell Long Ridge Racing 10
11 23x15px Charles Rickett Jim Lee Racing 10
12 Template:Country data Hong Kong Darren Shaw MacDonald Race Engineering 7
13 23x15px Guido Basile Terropol Promotions 6
14 23x15px Paul Smith Tech-Speed Motorsport 5
15 23x15px Gary Thomas CS Engineering 4
16 23x15px Rob Mears Cram Motorsport 4
17 23x15px Chris Needham Hi-Tech Motor Sport Developments 3
18 23x15px Juan Serda Roger Cowman Racing 2
19 23x15px Alan Tulloch Peter Lea Racing 1
20 23x15px Chris Perkins Royal Air Force MSA 1

References