Second GP3 Series pole position for MW Arden’s New Zealander
Mitch Evans took his second pole position of the season for MW Arden in a closely fought battle for the top spot at Nürburgring today. The Series front runner was just 0.035 seconds ahead of Antonio Felix Da Costa in second.
The field hit the track in much improved and sunny conditions for the early morning session. Marussia Manor Racing’s Rio Haryanto was the first driver to set a quick time during a frantic first few minutes of the session as the drivers all headed out on fresh rubber. Evans, James Calado, Valtteri Bottas and Tom Dillmann all joined the Indonesian at the top of the timesheet in a battle for P1.
By the midway point of qualifying when the thirty strong field began flooding the pits for new Pirelli P Zero slick tyres it was Dillmann who had taken control of the session and became the first man to break under the 1:50 barrier. The Frenchman was comfortably ahead of Lewis Williamson by half a second after the Scotsman put in a flyer to move up the times. Gabby Chaves was next to put in a challenge and the Addax Team driver briefly moved up into second before Felix Da Costa improved to bump the Colombian down a spot. Aaro Vainio was also in the mix and fighting with Haryanto for a second row start tomorrow.
With four minutes left on the clock Felix Da Costa put in a storming lap to snatch provisional pole from Dillmann with a 1:49.401 lap and looked like securing his first GP3 pole, but seconds later Evans moved to the top. Dillmann put in one final challenge but was hampered by traffic leaving Evans and Felix Da Costa to line-up on the front row. Haryanto took third ahead of Dillmann, Vainio, Adrian Quaife-Hobbs, Alexander Sims, Williamson, Calado and Zoel Amberg.
With twenty-five drivers within one second tomorrow’s race look set to be a thriller. Evans is now just 1 point behind the Series leader Sims in the drivers’ standings.
|1||26||M. EVANS||MW Arden||1:49.366||12|
|2||5||A. FELIX DA COSTA||Status Grand Prix||1:49.401||12||0.035|
|3||11||R. HARYANTO||Marussia Manor Racing||1:49.444||14||0.078|
|4||23||T. DILLMANN||Addax Team||1:49.447||14||0.081|
|5||17||A. VAINIO||Tech 1 Racing||1:49.506||12||0.140|
|6||10||A. QUAIFE-HOBBS||Marussia Manor Racing||1:49.612||14||0.246|
|7||4||A. SIMS||Status Grand Prix||1:49.687||14||0.321|
|8||28||L. WILLIAMSON||MW Arden||1:49.755||12||0.389|
|9||3||J. CALADO||Lotus ART||1:49.803||12||0.437|
|10||22||Z. AMBERG||Atech CRS GP||1:49.811||13||0.445|
|11||2||V. BOTTAS||Lotus ART||1:49.832||12||0.466|
|12||29||L. BACHETA||RSC Mucke Motorsport||1:49.843||12||0.477|
|13||27||S. TRUMMER||MW Arden||1:49.887||13||0.521|
|14||30||M. CHRISTENSEN||RSC Mucke Motorsport||1:49.903||12||0.537|
|15||24||G. CHAVES||Addax Team||1:49.960||13||0.594|
|17||1||P. NUNES||Lotus ART||1:49.990||12||0.624|
|18||19||T. PAL KISS||Tech 1 Racing||1:50.006||13||0.640|
|19||7||N. MULLER||Jenzer Motorsport||1:50.037||12||0.671|
|20||9||V. GHIRELLI||Jenzer Motorsport||1:50.057||12||0.691|
|21||21||N. YELLOLY||Atech CRS GP||1:50.069||12||0.703|
|22||20||M. STOCKINGER||Atech CRS GP||1:50.130||13||0.764|
|23||12||M. LAINE||Marussia Manor Racing||1:50.184||13||0.818|
|24||6||I. LUKASHEVICH||Status Grand Prix||1:50.222||14||0.856|
|25||25||D. SMITH||Addax Team||1:50.320||13||0.954|
|26||8||M. ZIMIN||Jenzer Motorsport||1:50.519||12||1.153|
|27||31||N. MELKER||RSC Mucke Motorsport||1:50.612||9||1.246|
|30||18||T. HYLKEMA||Tech 1 Racing||1:52.481||12||3.115|