Just as he did at Rockingham in March, Brazil’s Felipe Nasr today led the way in official testing at the Northamptonshire speedway. The Carlin driver and Cooper Tires British Formula 3 International Series points leader ended the first of two days of Rockingham testing a little over a tenth of a second ahead of the pack.
The top five today set their best marks this morning; rain towards the end of the day ensured that Nasr’s top AM time, 1m 12.687s, went unbeaten. In the afternoon Felipe knocked up a 1m 13.000s lap before the heavens opened, a hundredth adrift of the best afternoon lap, which was set by his Carlin team-mate Jazeman Jaafar.
Double Snetterton victor Kevin Magnussen was second quickest overall, a hundredth ahead of Hitech Racing’s Pietro Fantin, with Rupert Svendsen-Cook, Jaafar and Carlos Huertas making it five Carlin men in the top six. Fortec’s William Buller placed seventh, pipping Double R man Scott Pye to the honour of best Mercedes-powered runner. T-Sport’s Bart Hylkema continued his progress with a dominant Rookie class performance.
Though the rain meant that he did not get the chance to try his car on a full set of new Cooper slicks, top Brit Svendsen-Cook was pleased with his progress: “I’m very happy with the car and I feel confident we can go quicker still tomorrow. It seems the team has made quite a few steps forward during the break from racing.”
There were a couple of notable absentees: Riki Christodoulou’s Hitech seat was filled for the day by former Formula Ford racer Garry Findlay – Christo is expected back on duty again tomorrow – while 18-year-old student Jack Harvey had to sit an exam instead.
There is further official testing at Rockingham tomorrow in preparation for the 18/19 June Brands Hatch rounds of the championship.
British Formula 3 enjoys the headlining support of Cooper Tires and is additionally backed by Sunoco Racing Fuels, Anglo American Oil Company and OAMPS.
Cooper Tires British Formula 3 International Series
Official testing, Rockingham / 7 June 2011
Leading runners am / pm
1 Felipe NASR / BRA, Carlin Dallara-Volkswagen 1m 12.687s / 1m 13.000s
2 Kevin MAGNUSSEN / DEN, Carlin Dallara-Volkswagen 1m 12.830s / 1m 13.431s
3 Pietro FANTIN / BRA, Hitech Dallara-Volkswagen 1m 12.843s / 1m 13.623s
4 Rupert SVENDSEN-COOK / GBR, Carlin Dallara-VW 1m 12.857s / 1m 13.476s
5 Jazeman JAAFAR / MAS, Carlin Dallara-Volkswagen 1m 12.969s / 1m 12.987s
6 Carlos HUERTAS / COL, Carlin Dallara-Volkswagen 1m 14.431s / 1m 13.047s
7 William BULLER /GBR, Fortec Dallara-Mercedes 1m 13.715s / 1m 13.085s
8 Scott PYE / AUS, Double R Dallara-Mercedes 1m 13.184s / 1m 13.500s
9 Lucas FORESTI / BRA, Fortec Dallara-Mercedes 1m 13.874s / 1m 13.238s
10 Menasheh IDAFAR / GBR, T-Sport Dallara-Volkswagen 1m 13.293s / 1m 14.053s etc
1 Bart HYLKEMA / NED, T-Sport Dallara-Mugen Honda 1m 14.816s / 1m 14.844s
2 Kotaro SAKURAI / JPN, Hitech Dallara-Mugen Honda 1m 16.502s / 1m 16.681s