The 2005 British F3 International Series was presented to the media at Silverstone Circuit, England, today as part of the series' annual Media Day. The event consisted of a three-hour test session around the International Circuit followed by a press conference with Stephane Ratel, president of the SRO.
Marko Asmer, who finished tenth in the 2004 British Formula Three Championship, was the quickest driver in the test finishing narrowly ahead of 2004 Formula Renault champion Mike Conway and Formula Ford graduate Charlie Kimball. The session was interrupted by several stoppages including Tim Bridgman and Josh Fisher with mechanical failures and Susie Stoddart, Royayne O'Mahony and Ryan Lewis all spinning off at Brooklands. There was also heavy rainfall after two hours which reduced the running in the final hour to a few slow exploratory laps.
Stephane Ratel addressed the media in the afternoon and talked about how the Series developed in preparation for the 2005 season. "Lessons were learned from last year and we listened to what the teams wanted - the F3 teams wanted to run on F1 circuits". As a result the Series will visit Spa-Francorchamps, Nurburgring and Monza to support rounds of the LMES (Le Mans Endurance Series) as well as supporting at the Silverstone event on the Grand Prix circuit.
This season sees the introduction of the National Class which uses a control Mugen-Honda engine and limits on testing and tyres to give an affordable package, demonstrated by the fact that nine drivers participated in the test session in this class, and they were headed by Suk Sandher who finished the session just 0.8 seconds behind the fastest Championship Class driver.
The first race meeting of the season will take place at Donington Park, England on April 2nd and 3rd.