GP2 logoSeries leader fastest in Abu Dhabi

Fabio Leimer has started the final weekend of the 2013 GP2 Series in fine style after claiming the top spot in this morning’s free practice session at Yas Marina Circuit, stealing the spot in his final lap to head title rival Sam Bird and Dani Clos.

The points leader set a time of 1:51.766 on his final lap to claim best time from Bird, but the Englishman appeared to be on a faster lap before slowing slightly in the final sector, relinquishing the position he had held for much of the session in the process.

The practice session took place under blazing skies, with times tumbling throughout as the drivers came to grips with the circuit and their tyres: Jolyon Palmer set the first competitive lap before Bird claimed the top spot just 8 minutes in, improving his time later before Clos took over on the leaderboard with just over ten minutes remaining.

As the pace improved a number of drivers ran wide, showing just how hard they were working to improve their times: Bird regained the top spot with four minutes remaining, but Leimer laid down a marker for the championship battle as the chequered flag came out.

Alexander Rossi, James Calado, Tom Dillmann, Jon Lancaster, Stéphane Richelmi, Johnny Cecotto and Felipe Nasr filled the timesheets behind the top three, with just one second covering the first 11 drivers: the pace promises to heat up even more when qualifying starts a few hours from now.

Abu Dhabi – Free Practice

Driver Team Laptime Laps
1. Fabio Leimer Racing Engineering 1:51.766

10

2. Sam Bird RUSSIAN TIME 1:51.924

13

3. Dani Clos MP Motorsport 1:52.019

11

4. Alexander Rossi EQ8 Caterham Racing 1:52.061

13

5. James Calado ART Grand Prix 1:52.162

11

6. Tom Dillmann RUSSIAN TIME 1:52.175

12

7. Jon Lancaster Hilmer Motorsport 1:52.543

12

8. Stéphane Richelmi DAMS 1:52.573

14

9. Johnny Cecotto Arden International 1:52.583

12

10. Felipe Nasr Carlin 1:52.697

14

11. Rene Binder Venezuela GP Lazarus 1:52.709

14

12. Marcus Ericsson DAMS 1:52.801

13

13. Jolyon Palmer Carlin 1:52.822

14

14. Nathanaël Berthon Trident Racing 1:52.853

13

15. Jake Rosenzweig Barwa Addax Team 1:52.870

11

16. Julian Leal Racing Engineering 1:52.973

12

17. Sergio Canamasas EQ8 Caterham Racing 1:53.225

13

18. Simon Trummer Rapax 1:53.383

13

19 Daniel Abt ART Grand Prix 1:53.472

13

20. Rio Haryanto Barwa Addax Team 1:53.552

12

21. Adrian Quaife-Hobbs Hilmer Motorsport 1:53.638

11

22. Daniel De Jong MP Motorsport 1:53.750

11

23. Stefano Coletti Rapax 1:53.986

10

24. Vittorio Ghirelli Venezuela GP Lazarus 1:54.435

14

25. Gianmarco Raimondo Trident Racing 1:55.291

14

26. Mitch Evans Arden International 2:00.043

10