Romanian fends off Alex Brundle and Ramon Pineiro for top spot
Mihai Marinescu secured his maiden pole position of the 2011 FIA Formula Two Championship during today’s (Saturday) first qualifying session at Monza.
The Romanian, who regards the track as his second home, topped the timesheets with a 1:40.071s, just ahead of Brit Alex Brundle in second. Ramon Pineiro, who has enjoyed three successive, will line up third on the gird for the 21-lap race.
Italian Mirko Bortolotti qualified fourth during the closely fought session with Swiss driver Christopher Zanella in fifth.
Just outside the top five was German Tobias Hegewald with Danish driver Mikkel Mac once again impressing in his debut F2 season to secure P7 for this afternoon’s race which gets underway at 14:00 (local time).
Thiemo Storz, Jack Clarke and Benjamin Lariche completed the top 10 for the session which saw the top 12 drivers all lap within one second of one another.
Speaking afterwards Marinescu said: “I’m very happy about it and I’m very pleased that it’s happened right here at Monza which is a very special place for me. I grew up here, everything as a race driver started for me here and it’s like a home. There were a lot of quick laps where I was fastest but also the new tyres made a big difference compared to yesterday’s free practice.”
Round 13 of the FIA Formula Two Championship gets underway later today with full coverage on the official F2 website.
Qualifying One, Results:
1. Mihai Marinescu, 1:40.071
2. Alex Brundle, +0.168s
3. Ramon Pineiro, +0.224s
4. Mirko Bortolotti, +0.270s
5. Christopher Zanella, +0.0.275s
6. Tobias Hegewald, +0.571s
7. Mikkel Mac, +0.624s
8. Thiemo Storz, +0.694s
9. Jack Clarke, +0.802s
10. Benjamin Lariche, +0.890s