Spa FR3.5: McLaren junior Kevin Magnussen takes commanding pole
|By Glenn Freeman||Saturday, June 1st 2013, 10:50 GMT|
Kevin Magnussen took a comfortable pole position for the first Formula Renault 3.5 race of the weekend at Spa.
The McLaren junior was in control of the fight at the front from the beginning of the session, which was delayed by morning fog at the Belgian circuit.
By the time the FR3.5 cars took to the track the surface was dry enough for slick tyres, and Magnussen settled into a rhythm long before anyone else.
He was briefly deposed with three minutes remaining when Arthur Pic snatched top spot, but Magnussen had more than enough in reserve and responded emphatically to cement his place at the top of the pile.
Pic was bumped down to fourth thanks to late improvements for Antonio Felix da Costa and Monaco podium finisher Jazeman Jaafar, while behind the Frenchman Marco Sorensen and Nikolay Martsenko jumped into the top six at the end.
Title contender Stoffel Vandoorne had a tough session on home soil, where he could only manage 13th.
The Belgian had been scrapping with Magnussen at the top in the early runs, but he struggled to find a clear lap on his second set of tyres.
A clash between Will Stevens and Monaco winner Nico Muller briefly brought out the yellow flags at the Bus Stop chicane, and that incident is under investigation by the stewards.
Vandoorne had to abandon his final lap when Pietro Fantin crashed at Turn 14, but he had already failed to improve on his previous best in the first sector so it was not certain that he would have moved up without the yellow flags.
Pos Driver Team Time Gap 1. Kevin Magnussen DAMS 1m58.868s 2. Antonio Felix da Costa Arden Caterham 1m59.241s + 0.373s 3. Jazeman Jaafar Carlin 1m59.641s + 0.773s 4. Arthur Pic AV 1m59.656s + 0.788s 5. Marco Sorensen Lotus 1m59.862s + 0.994s 6. Nikolay Martsenko Pons 1m59.913s + 1.045s 7. Daniil Move Comtec 1m59.967s + 1.099s 8. Oliver Webb Fortec 1m59.986s + 1.118s 9. Norman Nato DAMS 2m00.054s + 1.186s 10. Carlos Huertas Carlin 2m00.108s + 1.240s 11. Nigel Melker Tech 1 2m00.147s + 1.279s 12. Andre Negrao Draco 2m00.309s + 1.441s 13. Stoffel Vandoorne Fortec 2m00.328s + 1.460s 14. Lucas Foresti Comtec 2m00.403s + 1.535s 15. Christopher Zanella ISR 2m00.465s + 1.597s 16. Nico Muller Draco 2m00.556s + 1.688s 17. Sergey Sirotkin ISR 2m00.641s + 1.773s 18. Mikhail Aleshin Tech 1 2m00.734s + 1.866s 19. Carlos Sainz Jr Zeta 2m00.887s + 2.019s 20. Pietro Fantin Arden Caterham 2m00.895s + 2.027s 21. Marlon Stockinger Lotus 2m01.072s + 2.204s 22. Matias Laine P1/Strakka 2m01.485s + 2.617s 23. Zoel Amberg Pons 2m01.494s + 2.626s 24. Yann Cunha AV 2m01.666s + 2.798s 25. Mihai Marinescu Zeta 2m01.878s + 3.010s 26. Will Stevens P1/Strakka 2m02.002s + 3.134s