Vergne takes Spa race two pole
|By Peter Mills||Sunday, May 1st 2011, 08:37 GMT|
Jean-Eric Vergne has taken pole position for Spa-Francorchamps' second Formula Renault 3.5 race of the weekend.
The Frenchman will be aiming to go one better than his close second place to Carlin team-mate Robert Wickens in race one.
"It was a good lap," said Vergne. "Although my speed was not the best in sector two, I think for the race we'll leave the car close to how we had it yesterday."
BVM Target's Daniel Zampieri split the Carlin duo in this morning's qualifying session. The Italian's fastest time of 2m03.632s was some 0.238 seconds slower than Vergne's effort. Zampieri starred in last year's wet race at the Ardennes circuit, but this afternoon's affair is set to take place in dry conditions.
Race one winner Wickens was content with third spot. "It felt a tidy lap," said the Canadian. "I couldn't have done much better, maybe a tenth. It was definitely mistake free, so from that side I am pleased. From the second row, with a good pitstop strategy, hopefully I can still win."
Chris van der Drift enjoyed his best qualifying of the season. The Mofaz driver held the provisional pole for much of the session, before slipping to fourth. The Kiwi had struggled with straight-line speed in race one, but the problem now appears to be resolved.
"Yesterday we went backwards, but things are getting better," said van der Drift. "I have to have another discussion with the guys about our pitstop plans as I wasn't expecting to be so high up. We have been P8 or P9 for most of the weekend."
P1 Motorsport's Walter Grubmuller also enjoyed an upturn in form to claim fifth, ahead of Friday practice pacesetter Cesar Ramos.
"The balance is now much better than Saturday," said Ramos, who qualified 14th in race one. "Sixth is much better than where we were, at least I can fight."
Ramos's Fortec team-mate Alexander Rossi was at a loss to explain his disappointing 15th position. The American is second in the drivers' standings to Wickens.
"We seem to have semi-decent race pace," said Motorland winner Rossi, "but over one lap we're struggling. I just hope we can find whatever it is before the race."
Pos Driver Team Time Gap 1. Jean-Eric Vergne Carlin 2m02.394s 2. Daniel Zampieri BVM Target 2m02.632s + 0.238s 3. Robert Wickens Carlin 2m02.812s + 0.418s 4. Chris van der Drift Mofaz 2m02.814s + 0.420s 5. Walter Grubmuller P1 2m02.899s + 0.505s 6. Cesar Ramos Fortec 2m02.952s + 0.558s 7. Daniel Ricciardo ISR 2m02.954s + 0.560s 8. Nelson Panciatici KMP 2m03.023s + 0.629s 9. Anton Nebylitskiy KMP 2m03.116s + 0.722s 10. Kevin Korjus Tech 1 2m03.161s + 0.767s 11. Albert Costa EPIC 2m03.177s + 0.783s 12. Brendon Hartley Gravity-Charouz 2m03.278s + 0.884s 13. Jake Rosenzweig Mofaz 2m03.341s + 0.947s 14. Nathanael Berthon ISR 2m03.509s + 1.115s 15. Alexander Rossi Fortec 2m03.513s + 1.119s 16. Arthur Pic Tech 1 2m03.590s + 1.196s 17. Daniil Move P1 2m03.684s + 1.290s 18. Sten Pentus EPIC 2m03.735s + 1.341s 19. Oliver Webb Pons 2m03.813s + 1.419s 20. Jan Charouz Gravity-Charouz 2m03.829s + 1.435s 21. Sergio Canamasas BVM Target 2m03.849s + 1.455s 22. Andre Negrao Draco 2m03.891s + 1.497s 23. Stephane Richelmi Draco 2m03.901s + 1.507s 24. Daniel McKenzie Comtec 2m04.029s + 1.635s 25. Jean-Karl Vernay Pons 2m04.251s + 1.857s 26. Daniel de Jong Comtec 2m04.943s + 2.549s