Franco Colapinto had given Van Amersfoort Racing the pole position for the main race in Bahrain on Friday with the best time in qualifying. The Argentinian debutant successfully defended his lead at the start and pushed off second starter Roman Stanek on the run to the first corner.
Things went wrong further back between Zane Maloney and Francesco Pizzi. The two contacted each other and therefore could not continue on their way. A safety car situation was necessary to save both cars safely. The race also ended prematurely for Caio Collet: the MP Motorsport driver tried to avoid the impending chaos by going off the track, only to have his suspension broken on a “sausage curb”.
The field cleared again on the fifth lap, with Colapinto again managing to maintain the lead. Behind him, Martins, who had started from P3, took over second place from Stanek. The latter suffered further setbacks later in the lap, being hit from behind by Alexander Smolyar at Turn 10, resulting in a puncture. Stanek was also hit by a flat tire after colliding with Colapinto on Saturday. The Czech eventually finished the feature race in 22nd place, one place ahead of Smolyar.
Smolyar was involved in another incident midway through the race – on lap eleven of 23. This time Saturday’s sprint race winner Isack Hadjar suffered a flat tire in a battle with the neutral-flagged Russian. That happened in the battle for fifth place. Meanwhile, Arthur Leclerc, whose brother Charles will start from pole position in the Formula 1 race at Sakhir later on Sunday, made a big impression. The Monegasque had started thirteenth, but after fourteen laps he was already third behind leaders Colapinto and Martins.
Colapinto had poor traction on lap 15 in the 2-3 corner combination, which Martins took advantage of and took the lead. Three laps later, en route to Turn 1, Leclerc also passed Colapinto for P2. Leclerc then opened the hunt for Martins, but in the end they were a second and a half short of victory. For Martins it is his second victory in FIA Formula 3 after winning a race at Zandvoort last year.
Colapinto was third but dropped to P5 due to a five second time penalty for exceeding the track limit in favor of Gregoire Saucy and Juan Manuel Correa. Ollie Bearman was sixth followed by Jak Crawford, David Vidales and William Alatalo. Kaylen Frederick got the last point on P10.