The 17-year-old ROFGO Junior got one more chance to demonstrate his skills in one of the most competitive junior single-seater championships in the world, and he passed the test with flying colours.
Oliver excelled in Friday’s Qualifying on the drying track, where he set the fourth fastest lap time, beating all the main championship contenders, and most of the full-season entrants under the difficult conditions.
The reverse grid put him into P9 for Saturday’s Sprint Race, and he proved once again that he belongs on the grid. He got a great start and avoiding the opening lap chaos he stormed all the way up to fifth. Unfortunately, his charge came to a dramatic end in lap 6 when a contact with Zane Maloney at Blanchimont resulted in a huge crash. Thanks to the high safety standards of the modern F3 cars, Oliver walked away from the accident unharmed. However, this can’t be said about his Campos machine. The Spanish team had to pull an all-nighter to rebuild the car from scratch to allow the young Dane to be on the Feature race grid at 8:50 in the morning, a tremendous effort from the team.
Fuelled by the will to reward his team for their hard work, Goethe put on a spectacular display once again. He fired off the line and slotted straight into P3. With a clever move as the laughing third party in the battle for the lead, he passed Collet for P2 and after Maloney had to give his position back to the Brazilian driver, he dropped down to third, promoting Goethe into the lead of the race in only his second ever race weekend in FIA F3.
An incident further down in the midfield brought out the safety car, meaning that Ollie had to control the restart after the track was cleared. Unfortunately, the more experienced charging pack got the better of the Campos Racing driver and he dropped down to fourth place, but since Collet picked up a 5-second penalty, this meant that Oliver was still on the final step of the provisional podium. The 17-year-old was fending off championship runner-up Oliver Bearman until the final lap of the race, but with the advantage of DRS, the Ferrari Academy driver drove past Goethe, and so the Bullet Athlete crossed the line in P4. A brilliant weekend in which showed his true colours and leaves him with some excellent experience for 2023
“ What a weekend, and what an experience! It’s quite hard to summarize everything that happened. Qualifying was great fun. Campos gave me an amazing car and somehow, I nailed the last-minute shootout and grabbed P4 for Sunday’s race. Even I was surprised that I finished ahead of all the main title contenders in my second ever Qualy. It’s a shame that the Sprint race ended early for us because I felt competitive, but it’s part of motor racing, and I am just thankful that both Zane and I could walk away from that crash unharmed. The guys at Campos did an incredible job to rebuild my car. They didn’t leave the track, working all night to be ready for the Feature Race, and it turned out perfect. It was an amazing feeling to lead the race at some point and even though the safety car restart caught me off-guard, it’s just part of the learning process. I am a bit disappointed that I missed out on the podium, would have loved to reward the team for their hard work, but I still gave my all. Now my focus turns back to the title fight in Euroformula, but I can’t wait to return to this series, ideally for a full-season campaign.”
There is no time to rest for Oliver who will be back in his Team Motopark Euroformula Open car this weekend in Imola, and in the meantime, he will be back in the classroom at the International School of Monaco for the 2022-2023 school year.