gp3-carlogoMW Arden’s Carlos Sainz fastest in opening session

Spaniard Carlos Sainz started his Silverstone weekend in the best possible style by topping the timesheets in Free Practice for Round 3 of the 2013 GP3 Series season. Local favourites Lewis Williamson (Bamboo Engineering) and Nick Yelloly (Carlin) finished second and third.

After heavy rain had fallen throughout the day, the skies were clear when the 45 minute session got underway with only fine drizzle in the air. The 27 cars took to the track to test out the conditions with Koiranen GP’s Kevin Korjus leading the pack.

Williamson and Sainz were first to head the standings until Adderly Fong (Status Grand Prix) continued to light the timing screens in purple for a succession of laps as he improved on his time to hold P1. ART Grand Prix’s Jack Harvey was close in pursuit, shooting to P2 before having a minor run-off after his hot lap.

Yelloly flew to the top of the timesheets, the first driver into the 1m51s barrier at the midway point of the session before fellow Brit’ Williamson demoted him down a position. Series leader Tio Ellinas (Marussia Manor Racing) was caught out by the track conditions and had a 360 degree spin but was able to continue. His teammate Ryan Cullen also had a brief excursion off track as the circuit began to dry out. Jenzer Motorsport’s Samin Gomez stopped on the circut and had a premature end to her practice session.

With seven Brits in the 2013 GP3 line-up, it was Harvey’s turn to clock the quickest lap, until his teammates’ Conor Daly and Facu Regalia went P1 and P2.  Williamson became the first driver to lap in the 1m47s but it was Sainz who went one better in the final minutes to record a laptime of 1:47.432 which was yet to beaten before the chequered flag came out.

Williamson ended the session second, ahead of Yelloly, Daniil Kvyat (MW Arden, Daly, Melville McKee (Bamboo Engineering), Ellinas, Dino Zamparelli (Marussia Manor Racing), Alex Fontana (Jenzer Motorsport) and Regalia.

Qualifying takes place at 08.45 GMT tomorrow morning with the weather forecast suggesting for drier, warmer conditions. Let’s see what Silverstone brings us for the rest of the weekend!

Free Practice

Driver Team Laptime Laps
1. Carlos Sainz MW Arden 1:47.432

16

2. Lewis Williamson Bamboo Engineering 1:47.871

16

3. Nick Yelloly Carlin 1:47.877

17

4. Daniil Kvyat MW Arden 1:48.113

12

5. Conor Daly ART Grand Prix 1:48.187

15

6. Melville McKee Bamboo Engineering 1:48.303

17

7. Tio Ellinas Marussia Manor Racing 1:48.307

15

8. Dino Zamparelli Marussia Manor Racing 1:48.686

14

9. Alex Fontana Jenzer Motorsport 1:48.815

18

10. Facu Regalia ART Grand Prix 1:48.879

13

11. Jack Harvey ART Grand Prix 1:48.884

14

12. Luis Sa Silva Carlin 1:48.887

14

13. Giovanni Venturini Trident 1:48.924

16

14. Patrick Kujala Koiranen GP 1:49.045

16

15. Adderly Fong Status Grand Prix 1:49.250

19

16. Robert Visoiu MW Arden 1:49.389

14

17. Josh Webster Status Grand Prix 1:49.547

17

18. Jimmy Eriksson Status Grand Prix 1:49.791

16

19. Eric Lichtenstein Carlin 1:50.265

12

20. Kevin Korjus Koiranen GP 1:50.272

15

21. Aaro Vainio Koiranen GP 1:50.426

13

22. David Fumanelli Trident 1:50.805

8

23. Patric Niederhauser Jenzer Motorsport 1:51.314

17

24. Emanuele Zonzini Trident 1:51.675

17

25. Ryan Cullen Marussia Manor Racing 1:52.878

16

26. Samin Gomez Jenzer Motorsport 1:53.051

10

27. Carmen Jorda Bamboo Engineering 1:56.136

17