SEARCH BY VEHICLE

Michael Lewis Powers to Third in F3 Italia Points Standings and Leads the ROY Battle

       Printer Image
The second and six place finishes in Misano powered Lewis into third place overall for the Italian Championship.
The second and six place finishes in Misano powered Lewis into third place overall for the Italian Championship.
There's a paradoxical phenomenon that every racer exists in, a reality where as the outside world accelerates with blinding speed, their focus sharpens like a movie camera pulling in for a close-up, and their inner world becomes utterly serene. It is in essence a racer's ability to slow the world down that allows them to control it. Michael Lewis, the Laguna Beach, California phenom understands just how critical that reality is on the world racing stage of Formula 3 Italia Championship.
The 20-year-old Lewis says he's pushing as hard as possible to claim the Rookie of the Year title, it's his number one priority for the 2011 season.
The 20-year-old Lewis says he's pushing as hard as possible to claim the Rookie of the Year title, it's his number one priority for the 2011 season.


"I am calmer and more confident compared to the first race weekend," Lewis told K&N Race News. "The calm manner we do this job with makes me more confident."

With his second and sixth place finishes during Rounds 3 and 4 at the Misano Circuit in Italy, Lewis moved into third place in the 2011 Formula 3 Italia Championship points standings and second place in the rookie championship battle (Update: after his strong finish in Imola last weekend Lewis now holds first place in the rookie championship - see below).

Lewis and the Prema Powerteam were off to a strong start for the weekend with Lewis recording fast lap times in both of the free practice sessions. When it came time to qualify on Saturday morning, Michael's Prema engineer, Fabio Zilio, and mechanic, Marco Sbabo, put together the right set-up, which allowed Lewis to record a lap time of 1:31.098 to place him third overall among the 16 drivers.
Michael Lewis says his he owes his success at Misano to his Prema team, as they worked very hard to get the car right.
Michael Lewis says his he owes his success at Misano to his Prema team, as they worked very hard to get the car right.


"Qualifying well was our team's goal for the Misano weekend," the K&N sponsored driver remarked. "The Formula 3 Italia series is very competitive with its great drivers and teams, so to do well you must put together a strong qualifying effort. I owe my success at Misano to my Prema team, as they worked very hard to get the car right. I work closely with my team to make the best racecar possible, and then go out and drive."
With each successful round Lewis says he gets a little calmer and more confident.
With each successful round Lewis says he gets a little calmer and more confident.


Lewis started Round 3 third on the grid. When the lights went off and the 16 drivers launched, Lewis took charge, moving quickly into second on the exit of turn one. Lewis kept pace with the leader throughout the 30-minute timed race. When the checkered flag waved on lap 20, Lewis had a solid second-place finish, his second podium finish in three race events

Lewis mentioned that he also gained valuable experience with the tire degradation of the Kumho compound during the race. "Each lap, the balance of the car was changing, so I adjusted my references to best fit the situation."

Round 4 fired-up early on Sunday morning. Lewis started the race in sixth position on the grid this time, because the top-eight qualifiers from the first round of the weekend are inverted for the following round. Again Lewis got an excellent start and quickly moved into fifth place on the first lap and kept pace with the lead pack. Lewis was then forced into some defensive driving, however he managed to continue running competitive lap times, crossing the finish line in sixth place. Lewis' teammate, Raffaele Marciello won the race by leading every lap.
K&N's Michael Lewis was a fan favorite during the drivers autograph session prior to the start of the two 30-lap Late Model feature at Toyota Speedway.
K&N's Michael Lewis was a fan favorite during the drivers autograph session prior to the start of the two 30-lap Late Model feature at Toyota Speedway.


"I was very pleased with our results at Misano," commented Lewis. "It means a lot to me to be able to run with the best and be competitive. I know it is important for me to be able to showcase all my sponsors, and because these race events are televised by RAI Sport live, there is an extra added benefit for my sponsors to gain valuable exposure during the race weekend."

After the rounds in Misano, Lewis returned to the United States during a break between Formula 3 Italia events to race a High Point Racing (HPR) Late Model car at Toyota Speedway at Irwindale.

"I was excited to be back, as I was away from California for three months. Racing in Irwindale is only a one hour drive from my house, so it is essentially my home track," Lewis said. "In both races I was very fast, and with old/graining tires, I have a fast pace. With the high-grip set up for qualifying, I have some margin to improve my lap time. In any case, driving the Late Model cars were quite fun."

Lewis accepted the offer extended by HPR team owner Tim Huddleston to join his team for six Late Model events this summer at the Irwindale race track. "Any chance I get to race, I love it," Lewis adds.

After Irwindale, Lewis and the Prema team returned to Italy for Rounds 5 and 6 of Formula 3 Italia Championship in Imola, Italy on July 16 and 17. Lewis stalled his engine at the start of Round 5, and then raced from eleventh place to finish in sixth. In Sunday's race he finished a very solid fourth, and now leads the Rookie of the Year chase.

"I set the goal of becoming rookie champion. So far I am leading the rookie championship and I am P3 in the overall championship, so that is good. Setting the goal of the rookie championship is the only thing I picture. Other than that, I focus on what I must do currently without any expectations, and what I must do is push for first place. That's it."

Find K&N products for your vehicle using the K&N application search then use the K&N dealer search to find a K&N dealer in your part of the world.

Horizontal Advertisement


Did you like this story? Select 1 to 5 stars to rate it.

K&N Engineering in Riverside California is the world's leading manufacturer of washable performance air filters and air intake systems. K&N invented the reusable high flow cotton air filter in 1969 and has been perfecting the technology ever since. K&N is a world class filtration company selling air filters, oil filters, and intakes in over 30 countries. K&N sells over 5,000 products designed for cars, trucks, motorcycles, engines, and industrial applications. From their Million Mile Warranty to their Consumer Protection Pledge, K&N stands behind their products and their consumers 100%. The distinctive K&N logo represents performance from one of the original performance companies. For more information, visit knfilters.com.