GP2 Series Media

Frenchman on top in Germany

Romain Grosjean has picked up where he left off in Silverstone by claiming the top spot in free practice this morning at the Nurburgring, leading all through the session to finish 0.7 ahead of Dani Clos and Jules Bianchi.

The Frenchman’s best laptime of 1:40.484 was set just ten minutes into the session, improving on his own times to garrison the top of the timesheets throughout, and handing his rivals an unanswerable challenge in the time remaining.

The session opened under overcast and cold conditions, but at least the rain held off as the 26 cars headed out on track: Grosjean was the first man to set a competitive time, with Esteban Gutierrez, Clos and Christian Vietoris pushing hard to catch up until Grosjean set his best lap, putting over a second on everyone else in the field.

Title rival Giedo van der Garde was unable to do anything about the Frenchman after suffering from a mechanical gremlin: the Dutchman limped back to the pits but his session was clearly over as most of the grid came in behind him for fresh rubber. One man who didn’t return, though, was Davide Valsecchi, who was trying to take advantage of the clear track but ran wide at the final turn and found the wall.

With many of the drivers looking to finalise race set ups there was no improvement on lap times in the second half of the session, other than Clos grabbing P2 with a minute remaining: Luca Filippi and Charles Pic were just behind the top three, with Gutierrez, Fabio Leimer, Jolyon Palmer, Stefano Coletti and Alvaro Parente rounding out the top ten.

But with most of the field keeping their powder dry in the session, this afternoon’s qualifying session should give a much clearer indication of their pace at the fabled circuit.

Nürburgring – Free Practice

  Driver Team Laptime Laps
1. Romain Grosjean Dams 1:40.484

14

2. Dani Clos Racing Engineering 1:41.222

13

3. Jules Bianchi Lotus ART 1:41.326

13

4. Luca Filippi Scuderia Coloni 1:41.330

13

5. Charles Pic Barwa Addax Team 1:41.411

12

6. Esteban Gutierrez Lotus ART 1:41.426

13

7. Fabio Leimer Rapax 1:41.616

14

8. Jolyon Palmer Arden International 1:41.716

13

9. Stefano Coletti Trident Racing 1:41.748

12

10. Alvaro Parente Carlin 1:41.834

13

11. Christian Vietoris Racing Engineering 1:41.863

13

12. Luiz Razia Caterham Team AirAsia 1:41.936

14

13. Sam Bird iSport International 1:41.971

11

14. Giedo van der Garde Barwa Addax Team 1:42.049

6

15. Michael Herck Scuderia Coloni 1:42.077

14

16. Kevin Mirocha Ocean Racing Technology 1:42.213

12

17. Rodolfo Gonzalez Trident Racing 1:42.248

13

18. Marcus Ericsson iSport International 1:42.250

11

19 Josef Kral Arden International 1:42.312

12

20. Fairuz Fauzy Super Nova Racing 1:42.335

13

21. Max Chilton Carlin 1:42.380

9

22. Adam Carroll Super Nova Racing 1:42.471

13

23. Davide Valsecchi Caterham Team AirAsia 1:42.641

8

24. Pal Varhaug Dams 1:42.673

13

25. Julian Leal Rapax 1:42.927

14

26. Johnny Cecotto Ocean Racing Technology 1:42.032

14