Marko Asmer

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Marko Asmer
Nationality Estonia Estonian
Born (1984-07-30) 30 July 1984 (age 29)
Tallinn (Estonia)
Championship titles
2007 British F3 Champion

Marko Asmer (born 30 July 1984 in Tallinn) is an Estonian racing driver, whose career in single seater junior formula is notable for his British Formula Three Championship title in 2007. Asmer is also the first Estonian to test a Formula One car, having tested for the Williams BMW team in 2003 after just half a season of car racing in British Formula Ford.[1][2] Asmer's father is a former racing driver Toivo Asmer, who was Estonian Minister of Regional Affairs between 1999 and 2003.[3]

Racing career[edit]

Asmer began karting in 1995, aged eleven, and had won the Estonian, Baltic, Finnish and Scandinavian kart championships by 2001.[4] Asmer went on to made his car racing debut in 2003 and raced in British Formula Ford for team JLR. He scored six wins that season and finished in second place in the Formula Ford festival.[1] Apart from a brief participation in the Formula Renault V6 Eurocup in 2003, Asmer's career was henceforth focused on Formula Three in Britain and Japan. He made his British series début in 2004 with Hitech Racing and, apart from a move to Japan in 2006, he has remained with the team in the years since. He became a championship title contender on his return to the British series in 2007, led the points standings for most of the season, and secured the title at Croft with three races remaining.[5] His participations in All-Japan F3 have been confined to one and a half seasons with Three Bond Racing in 2006 and 2007, the latter of which was limited by competing in Britain.[6] In 2008 Asmer was BMW Sauber's second test driver alongside Christian Klien[6][7] and competed in seven of ten rounds in the GP2 Series for FMS International,[8]

Retirement[edit]

Following the conclusion of the 2008 GP2 season Asmer parted ways with Fisichella Motor Sport and was unable to find a new team in GP2 for the 2009 season. Due to new rules restricting the amount of testing Formula 1 teams could carry out in-season he also lost his role as test and reserve driver for the BMW Formula 1 Team.[9] With no competitive race seat for the 2009 season Asmer became a test and reserve driver in Superleague Formula series.[10]

On 8 April 2010 Toivo Asmer, the father of Marko Asmer, announced that Marko had ended his career in motorsport he had no race seat or test/reserve driver role for the 2010 season, and lack of funding meant that his son's career was finished.[11] Despite this Asmer made a quick return to the cockpit the following week when he tested for the Atech team in a GP3 Series test session in Barcelona.[12] However, a race seat in GP3 did not materialise and Asmer's motorsport career did appear to be over.

Return to Competitive Racing[edit]

In February 2011 Asmer returned to motorsport when he tested a British Formula 3 car for the Double R Racing team at Silverstone, during which he set competitive times.[13] Staying with Double R Asmer finally returned to competitive racing when he competed in the Pau Grand Prix on 21–22 May 2011. Asmer qualified 10th[14] and after a bad start found himself in last place,[15] but showed good race pace and overtaking nous to finish 7th.[16]

Following his return to racing Asmer was interviewed by Autosport.com and revealed that he had spent his time out of professional motorsport "testing some cars, doing karting and ... doing some driver coaching".[17] He went on to say that he had no firm plans for the future, although he did want to take part in the Macau Grand Prix.[17] Asmer also said that he would welcome a return to racing "if something good comes up", although a full-time return to British F3 would not interest him.[17]

Despite these claims it was announced on 28 July 2011 that Asmer would return to British Formula 3, again racing a Dallara-Mercedes for the Double R team at the Spa-Francorchamps round.[18] Asmer qualified 18th (of 28 cars) for Race One at Spa, but then scored Double R's best qualifying result of the season, lining up second on the grid for the Feature Race. Asmer failed to finish in Race One[19] or Two,[20] but drove solidly to finish sixth in the Feature Race.[21] However, his status as an invitational driver meant that he was not eligible to score championship points for this weekend.[22] During this weekend it was also announced that Asmer had sponsorship in place to take part in the 2011 Macau Grand Prix,[23] where he would drive a Dallara-Mercedes for a three-man Double R Racing team, alongside GP3 champion Valtteri Bottas and current GP3 Series racer Mitch Evans.[24]

2011 Macau Grand Prix[edit]

The Macau Grand Prix weekend took place on 17–20 November 2011.[25] The first practice session took place in heavy rain and had to be red flagged twice due to crashes. Asmer was only able to set the 27th fastest time (out of 29 drivers) and was almost 24 seconds off frontrunner Marco Wittmann's pace.[26] Things improved for Asmer in qualifying where he was running as high as seventh, before sidepod damage affected his straight line speed and he began to drop down the order. To worsen matters Asmer received a three place grid-drop for illegally cutting across the pit lane exit, eventually leaving him 18th on the grid for the main race.[27] In the main race Asmer was involved in an early clash with Kimiya Sato and Carlos Huertas[28] but was able to continue on to lap 13, when he eventually retired from the race. Despite this Asmer was still classified as finishing in 19th place as he had completed enough of the race.[29]

In an interview with Autosport carried out over the Macau Grand Prix weekend Asmer reiterated his desire to get back into racing full-time, and said his future may lie in DTM.[30]

Racing record[edit]

Asmer demonstrating a BMW Sauber F1.06 at the 2008 Goodwood Festival of Speed.
Asmer driving for FMS International at the Silverstone round of the 2008 GP2 Series season.

Career summary[edit]

Season Series Team Name Races Poles Wins Points Final Placing
2003 Formula Renault V6 Eurocup SRTS 2 0 0 6 19th
British Formula Ford Panasonic Batteries Racing Team 20 1 2 252 11th
Formula Ford Festival Hitech Racing 1 0 0 N/A 2nd
2004 British Formula Three Hitech Racing 24 0 0 87 10th
Formula 3 European Cup Hitech Racing 1 0 0 N/A 7th
Bahrain F3 Superprix Carlin Motorsport 1 0 0 N/A 6th
Macau Grand Prix Hitech Racing 1 1 0 N/A 11th
Masters of Formula 3 Hitech Racing 1 0 0 N/A 16th
2005 British Formula Three Hitech Racing 22 2 0 163 4th
Masters of Formula 3 Hitech Racing 1 0 0 N/A 7th
2006 Japanese Formula 3 ThreeBond 18 0 1 124 7th
Macau Grand Prix Hitech Racing 1 1 0 N/A 13th
2007 British Formula Three Hitech Racing 22 13 11 293 1st
Japanese Formula 3 ThreeBond 8 0 0 31 10th
Macau Grand Prix Hitech Racing 1 1 0 N/A 4th
Masters of Formula 3 Hitech Racing 1 0 0 N/A 10th
2008 GP2 Series FMS International 12 0 0 0 28th
Formula One BMW Sauber Test driver
2009 Superleague Formula Test driver
2010 Austrian Formula Renault Team Scuderia Nordica 1 1 1 20 15th
2011 Pau Grand Prix Double R Racing 1 0 0 N/A 7th
2011 Macau Grand Prix Double R Racing 1 0 0 N/A 19th

Complete GP2 Series results[edit]

(key) (Races in bold indicate pole position) (Races in italics indicate fastest lap)

Year Entrant 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 DC Points
2008 FMS International ESP
FEA
ESP
SPR
TUR
FEA
TUR
SPR
MON
FEA
MON
SPR
FRA
FEA

17
FRA
SPR

11
GBR
FEA

20
GBR
SPR

13
GER
FEA

14
GER
SPR

13
HUN
FEA

18
HUN
SPR

Ret
EUR
FEA

DNS
EUR
SPR

Ret
BEL
FEA

16
BEL
SPR

Ret
ITA
FEA

Ret
ITA
SPR

Ret
28th 0

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Car No.7: Marko Asmer From hitechracing.net. Retrieved October 11, 2007.
  2. ^ Teenager lands Williams job From news.bbc.co.uk, September 3, 2003. Retrieved October 11, 2007.
  3. ^ Ott, Urmas. Asmerid. Topeltpeeglis ISBN 978-9985-854-76-1
  4. ^ Marko Asmer - F1Fanatic. F1Fanatic.co.uk, 4 December 2007
  5. ^ Asher, Richard. "Asmer takes title" From autosport.com, September 9, 2007. Retrieved September 9, 2007.
  6. ^ a b Race driver database From speedsport.com. Retrieved September 9, 2007.
  7. ^ Noble, J. "BMW plan shoot-out for test role" From autosport.com, November 17, 2007. Retrieved on November 18, 2007.
  8. ^ Asmer joins GP2 series From gp2.gpupdate.net. Retrieved on January 30, 2011.
  9. ^ Testing Ban Leaves Asmer and Di Grassi Without Jobs Autoevolution.com, 23 January 2010
  10. ^ Stars of Tomorrow - Where are they Now?. Update F1, 1 January 2010
  11. ^ Asmer Career is over says Father. GP Update, 8 April 2010
  12. ^ Asmer - Time is Running Out. GP Update, 15 April 2010
  13. ^ Asmer Tests for Double R at Silverstone. GP Update, 25 February 2011
  14. ^ Wittmann takes Pole Position at Pau. The Checkered Flag, 21 May 2011
  15. ^ Wittmann Dominantes Pau Grand Prix. Autosport.com, 22 May 2011
  16. ^ Wittmann Scores Dominant Pau Grand Prix Win. The Checkered Flag, 22 May 2011
  17. ^ a b c Q & A: Asmer on his F3 Return. Autosport.com, 21 May 2011
  18. ^ Former Champ Asmer Returns to British F3 for Spa. MotorsTV.com, 28 July 2011
  19. ^ Race 1 Results - British F3 Spa. GpUpdate.net, 30 July 2011
  20. ^ Race 2 Results - British F3 Spa. GpUpdate.net, 30 July 2011
  21. ^ Merhi & Buller Star in Spa Curtain Closer. Formula3.co, 30 July 2011
  22. ^ Roberto Merhi Takes Double Pole Position for British F3 Races at Spa. Autosport.com, 29 July 2011
  23. ^ Marko Asmer to return to British Formula 3 Championship at Spa with Double R. Autosport.com, 28 July 2011
  24. ^ Entry List Reveals Merhi, Nasr, Bottas, Stanway to Contest 2011 Macau GP The Checkered Flag, 6 October 2011
  25. ^ 58th Macau Grand Prix Macau Grand Prix Official Site, 10 October 2011
  26. ^ "Marco Wittmann leads wet first practice for Macau Grand Prix". www.Autosport.com. 17 November 2011. Retrieved 20 November 2011. 
  27. ^ "Double R Racing qualification race report". www.Motorsport.com. 19 November 2011. Retrieved 20 November 2011. 
  28. ^ "Juncadella takes surprise Macau GP win". www.Autosport.com. 20 November 2011. Retrieved 20 November 2011. 
  29. ^ "Juncadella wins thrilling Macau GP". www.thecheckeredflag.com. 20 November 2011. Retrieved 20 November 2011. 
  30. ^ "Marko Asmer hopes to revive career in Macau GP". www.Autosport.com. 16 November 2011. Retrieved 20 November 2011. 

External links[edit]

Sporting positions
Preceded by
Mike Conway
British Formula Three
Champion

2007
Succeeded by
Jaime Alguersuari