Frenchman leads the way in Barcelona
Pierre Gasly claimed first blood in today’s free practice session in sunny Barcelona, leading the timesheets throughout most of the 45 minute session to take the honours in the first live session of the 2016 GP2 Series season ahead of Alex Lynn and Artem Markelov.
Gasly and his 2015 teammate battled early in the session for the top spot, swapping it between them before the Red Bull test driver put a lock on the position with a time of 1:29.519: the Williams tester couldn’t get closer than a tenth away and had to make do as the teams concentrated on setting up the cars for qualifying and the races to come.
Markelov joined the pair in the top three 15 minutes in, laying down a marker as he pipped through a very tight top ten. The remainder of the session passed without incident as the drivers concentrated on staying on the track: with qualifying just a few hours away no one wanted to give their mechanics and unwelcome present.
The top ten was split by just one second, with Norman Nato, Sergey Sirotkin, Jordan King, top rookie Antonio Giovinazzi, Nobuharu Matsushita, Oliver Rowland and Marvin Kirchhöfer looking to overturn the top three in what promises to be a tight qualifying session this afternoon.
Round 1, Barcelona – Free Practice
Driver
Team
Laptime
Laps
1.
Pierre Gasly
PREMA Racing
1:29.519
18
2.
Alex Lynn
DAMS
1:29.623
20
3.
Artem Markelov
RUSSIAN TIME
1:29.860
16
4.
Norman Nato
Racing Engineering
1:29.874
18
5.
Sergey Sirotkin
ART Grand Prix
1:29.960
19
6.
Jordan King
Racing Engineering
1:30.001
18
7.
Antonio Giovinazzi
PREMA Racing
1:30.057
20
8.
Nobuharu Matsushita
ART Grand Prix
1:30.310
19
9.
Oliver Rowland
MP Motorsport
1:20.345
18
10.
Marvin Kirchhöfer
Carlin
1:30.470
16
11.
Nicholas Latifi
DAMS
1:30.542
20
12.
Luca Ghiotto
Trident
1:30.556
17
13.
Raffaele Marciello
RUSSIAN TIME
1:30.573
16
14.
Daniël de Jong
MP Motorsport
1:30.662
17
15.
Mitch Evans
Pertamina Campos Racing
1:30.720
15
16.
Arthur Pic
Rapax
1:30.722
19
17.
Jimmy Eriksson
Arden International
1:30.742
17
18.
Gustav Malja
Rapax
1:30.823
21
19
Sergio Canamasas
Carlin
1:31.015
17
20.
Sean Gelael
Pertamina Campos Racing
1:31.304
15
21.
Nabil Jeffri
Arden International
1:31.577
16
22.
Philo Paz Armand
Trident
1:32.803
21