Nurburgring European F3: Tom Blomqvist dodges rain to lead practice
|By Richard Asher||Friday, August 15th 2014, 12:23 GMT|
British driver Tom Blomqvist came out on top from a pair of European Formula 3 free practice sessions interrupted by rain and accidents at the Nurburgring.
The circuit was at its driest at the very beginning of the first half of practice, and that was when the Carlin Motorsport-run Jagonya Ayam racer registered a time that had no chance of being beaten after light rain, and then a heavy shower, arrived midway through the first session.
Blomqvist's lap was just a fraction quicker than that of runaway points leader Esteban Ocon. The Prema Powerteam driver does have a mathematical chance of sealing the title at this third-last meeting of the year.
Third, and only a tenth behind the two quickest men, was Carlin's Jake Dennis, though the British racer did later get caught out and crashed in the wet second part of practice.
The end of the first session was curtailed by an accident involving Michele Beretta, and the second red-flagged due to both West-Tec's new driver Andy Chang and Dennis going off the circuit. Frontrunner Felix Rosenqvist also had an off at the very end of the session.
Max Verstappen, whose van Amersfoort Racing car now carries Red Bull colours indicative of his newly-signed Formula 1 junior driver scheme affiliation, showed ominous pace in the wet-but-drying conditions of the second session, where lap times were around 15 seconds slower.
The Dutch driver, who was fourth quickest in the 'dry' running and leads the chase of Ocon in the championship, dropped his times consistently throughout this phase of practice, although Ocon did pip him by a couple of hundredths at the very end.
The fickle Eifel weather looks set to hang around at least for the first qualifying session later on Friday.
Practice one Pos Driver Car Time Gap Laps 1. Tom Blomqvist Carlin Dallara-VW 1m23.217s 21 2. Esteban Ocon Prema Dallara-Merc 1m23.268s +0.051s 20 3. Jake Dennis Carlin Dallara-VW 1m23.388s +0.171s 22 4. Max Verstappen Van Amersfoort Dallara-VW 1m23.416s +0.199s 22 5. Jordan King Carlin Dallara-VW 1m23.655s +0.438s 20 6. Antonio Fuoco Prema Dallara-Merc 1m23.674s +0.457s 22 7. Gustavo Menezes Van Amersfoort Dallara-VW 1m23.760s +0.543s 22 8. Ed Jones Carlin Dallara-VW 1m23.773s +0.556s 19 9. Dennis van de Laar Prema Dallara-Merc 1m23.896s +0.679s 24 10. Felix Rosenqvist Mucke Dallara-Merc 1m24.068s +0.851s 20 11. Nicholas Latifi Prema Dallara-Merc 1m24.095s +0.878s 17 12. Felix Serralles West-Tec Dallara-Merc 1m24.113s +0.896s 20 13. Lucas Auer Mucke Dallara-Merc 1m24.119s +0.902s 19 14. Alexander Toril T-Sport Dallara-NBE 1m24.349s +1.132s 19 15. Roy Nissany Mucke Dallara-Merc 1m24.507s +1.290s 17 16. Michele Beretta Eurointernational Dallara-Merc 1m24.567s +1.350s 19 17. Spike Goddard T-Sport Dallara-NBE 1m24.614s +1.397s 21 18. Sean Gelael Carlin Dallara-VW 1m24.649s +1.432s 19 19. Jules Szymkowiak Van Amersfoort Dallara-VW 1m24.856s +1.639s 21 20. Santino Ferrucci Eurointernational Dallara-Merc 1m25.083s +1.866s 18 21. Tatiana Calderon Jo Zeller Dallara-Merc 1m25.091s +1.874s 16 22. Andy Chang West-Tec Dallara-Merc 1m25.934s +2.717s 23 23. Antonio Giovinazzi Carlin Dallara-VW 1m26.424s +3.207s 16 24. Sandro Zeller Jo Zeller Dallara-Merc 1m32.167s +8.950s 12 Practice two Pos Driver Car Time Gap Laps 1. Esteban Ocon Prema Dallara-Merc 1m35.614s 18 2. Max Verstappen Van Amersfoort Dallara-VW 1m35.633s +0.019s 17 3. Lucas Auer Mucke Dallara-Merc 1m36.384s +0.770s 16 4. Felix Rosenqvist Mucke Dallara-Merc 1m36.396s +0.782s 14 5. Tatiana Calderon Jo Zeller Dallara-Merc 1m36.464s +0.850s 19 6. Antonio Fuoco Prema Dallara-Merc 1m36.909s +1.295s 17 7. Ed Jones Carlin Dallara-VW 1m36.938s +1.324s 16 8. Roy Nissany Mucke Dallara-Merc 1m36.949s +1.335s 17 9. Felix Serralles West-Tec Dallara-Merc 1m37.008s +1.394s 17 10. Jules Szymkowiak Van Amersfoort Dallara-VW 1m37.186s +1.572s 17 11. Gustavo Menezes Van Amersfoort Dallara-VW 1m37.212s +1.598s 19 12. Alexander Toril T-Sport Dallara-NBE 1m37.256s +1.642s 17 13. Santino Ferrucci Eurointernational Dallara-Merc 1m37.260s +1.646s 16 14. Tom Blomqvist Carlin Dallara-VW 1m37.406s +1.792s 15 15. Spike Goddard T-Sport Dallara-NBE 1m37.640s +2.026s 16 16. Dennis van de Laar Prema Dallara-Merc 1m37.697s +2.083s 18 17. Jordan King Carlin Dallara-VW 1m37.758s +2.144s 13 18. Sean Gelael Carlin Dallara-VW 1m38.024s +2.410s 15 19. Nicholas Latifi Prema Dallara-Merc 1m38.858s +3.244s 8 20. Sandro Zeller Jo Zeller Dallara-Merc 1m40.619s +5.005s 16 21. Jake Dennis Carlin Dallara-VW 1m40.987s +5.373s 2 22. Andy Chang West-Tec Dallara-Merc 1m47.080s +11.466s 2 23. Antonio Giovinazzi Carlin Dallara-VW no time 2