Markus Pommer

German leads from Zanella by 0.019s in closely fought session

Markus Pommer led the way during today’s (Friday) closely fought second Formula Two practice session at Brands Hatch, just pipping Christopher Zanella to the top spot by 0.019s.

After having limited running this morning, the German showed just how quickly he’d got to grips with an unfamiliar 2.3-mile Grand Prix loop to post a best time of 1:15.200 – quicker than last year’s pole time. 22-year-old Zanella then led a trio of Swiss racers of Alex Fontana and Mathéo Tuscher with Max Snegirev producing one of his best ever practice results to complete the top five.

Bright sunshine, a rare sight given the recent British weather, greeted drivers as the 45-minute session got underway, with Tuscher laying down the early benchmark and the first to break into the 1:15s.

Zanella was once again up alongside him in second together with Mihai Marinescu and Fontana, but neither were able to follow the Swiss into the 1:15s. 19-year-old Fontana then went quickest while Kourosh Khani was showing he’d fully recovered from his 78g crash at Spa to lie P4.

After running P13 for more than half the session, championship leader Bacheta then moved up into fifth before Zanella reasserted himself back at the top, lapping more than three tenths quicker than Fontana.

Russian racer Snegirev, still chasing his first points finish of 2012, was looking strong in fourth with just over 10 minutes remaining while Dino Zamparelli led a trio of Brits in fifth.

Pommer, who had remained quiet for much of the session, then produced a stunning late lap to take the honours and a contender for tomorrow’s pole position. This pushed the trio of Brits, still led by Zamparelli, to sixth with Bacheta in seventh and Hector Hurst in eighth. Axcil Jefferies hung onto P9 despite an off at Paddock Hill Bend with Khani ending tenth and Marinescu only managing 12th.

Tomorrow’s first qualifying session gets underway at 09:00 (local time) with full coverage on the F2 website.

F2 Results: Brands Hatch – Practice 2:

1. Markus Pommer, 1:15.200s
2. Christopher Zanella, +0.019s
3. Alex Fontana, +0.378s
4. Mathéo Tuscher, +0.485s
5. Max Snegirev, +0.656s
6. Dino Zamparelli, +0.724s
7. Luciano Bacheta, +0.882s
8. Hector Hurst, +0.929s
9. Axcil Jefferies, +1.104s
10. Kourosh Khani, +1.109s