France’s Benjamin Lariche insists his surge to the top of the timesheets in the final session in Portugal has left him full of confidence ahead of the series’ next test at Barcelona in less than a week.

Lariche finished inside the top four in every session at Portimão, but timed his final run to perfection as he displaced long-term pacesetter Jack Clarke to finish fastest after two days of testing.

“It’s good for the confidence to feel fastest,” Lariche admitted afterward. “After one year I feel comfortable in the F2 car, but the test helps because it gives you more time to analyse the data and try things on the car.

“The overall time wasn’t that important from today, because it was quite cold by the end and it was the first time some drivers had been in the car. To be fastest is the most important thing though and after two days I set the fastest time against guys like (Antonio Felix) da Costa and (Jolyon) Palmer, so I feel good.

“Hopefully now I can do the same at Barcelona – I know the track because I raced there in Formula Renault Eurocup, so I hope to get another good result there!”