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Wickens holds on to top spot

Robert Wickens Carlin Formula Renault 3.5 Monza 2011

Robert Wickens continued his superb form at the Nurburgring by topping the second Formula Renault 3.5 collective test at the German circuit.

The Canadian's benchmark time of 1m45.433s edged out Fortec's Alexander Rossi in second by 0.021 seconds.

Wickens is just one point behind his Carlin team-mate Jean-Eric Vergne at the head of the drivers' championship, but the recently-announced Virgin F1 reserve driver has not given any thought to the prize F1 roadshow run in a Renault that is on offer to the points leader after this weekend's German round.

"The first that I have heard about the prize run was today," said Wickens. "I think Carlin has proved that they're an exceptional team today. They analysed everything after Monaco and, for the first time I can remember, all of the things we tried on the car today worked.

"We got through the whole programme that we wanted to and still had 10 minutes at the end of the session just to fool around with. But I would be surprised if Alexander and I maintained such an advantage over everyone in qualifying."

With the exception of a sizeable gap behind the top two, the session was tightly contested as the third to seventh-placed men were covered by just 0.135s.

ISR's Daniel Ricciardo led the bunch, ahead of his Red Bull Junior stable-mate Vergne. The Frenchman caused the session to be red-flagged with a minor off-track moment at the Dunlop Kurve, but later returned to the pits.

"It has been a bit of difficult day, but we know there is time in the car for qualifying," said Vergne. "I had two spins in the quick Turn 5 this morning and damaged my wheels and then this afternoon I went into the gravel. It wasn't a big problem, but I preferred to receive a push from the marshals rather than risk damaging the car by spinning my wheels."

Fresh from scoring Gravity-Charouz's maiden podium finish at Monaco, Brendon Hartley took a competitive fourth. KMP Racing's Nelson Panciatici was 0.031s ahead of the Kiwi, while Epic Racing's Albert Costa was also in close proximity.

Pos  Driver             Team             Time       Gap
 1.  Robert Wickens     Carlin           1m45.433s
 2.  Alexander Rossi    Fortec           1m45.454s  + 0.021s
 3.  Daniel Ricciardo   ISR              1m45.940s  + 0.507s
 4.  Jean-Eric Vergne   Carlin           1m45.995s  + 0.562s
 5.  Brendon Hartley    Gravity-Charouz  1m46.015s  + 0.582s
 6.  Nelson Panciatici  KMP              1m46.046s  + 0.613s
 7.  Albert Costa       Epic             1m46.075s  + 0.642s
 8.  Nathanael Berthon  ISR              1m46.135s  + 0.702s
 9.  Cesar Ramos        Fortec           1m46.161s  + 0.728s
10.  Kevin Korjus       Tech 1           1m46.277s  + 0.844s
11.  Daniil Move        P1               1m46.330s  + 0.897s
12.  Jan Charouz        Gravity-Charouz  1m46.411s  + 0.978s
13.  Sergio Canamasas   BVM Target       1m46.535s  + 1.102s
14.  Daniel Zampieri    BVM Target       1m46.632s  + 1.199s
15.  Fairuz Fauzy       Mofaz            1m46.709s  + 1.276s
16.  Walter Grubmuller  P1               1m46.714s  + 1.281s
17.  Sten Pentus        Epic             1m46.762s  + 1.329s
18.  Michael Herck      Pons             1m46.831s  + 1.398s
19.  Andre Negrao       Draco            1m46.937s  + 1.504s
20.  Stephane Richelmi  Draco            1m46.967s  + 1.534s
21.  Anton Nebylitskiy  KMP              1m47.060s  + 1.627s
22.  Oliver Webb        Pons             1m47.072s  + 1.639s
23.  Jake Rosenzweig    Mofaz            1m47.138s  + 1.705s
24.  Daniel de Jong     Comtec           1m47.179s  + 1.746s
25.  Arthur Pic         Tech 1           1m47.927s  + 2.494s
26.  Daniel McKenzie    Comtec           1m47.989s  + 2.556s
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