Wickens takes Nurburgring pole
|By Peter Mills||Saturday, June 18th 2011, 09:16 GMT|
Robert Wickens claimed his third Formula Renault 3.5 pole position of the season at the Nurburgring on Saturday morning.
The Carlin driver has been fastest in every session so far, and was the only man to break the 1m45s mark.
A low aero configuration is mandatory during dry running on Saturdays, but today's session was declared wet shortly after the midway point owing to a brief light rain shower. A mass pitstop ensued, where drivers took the opportunity to apply more wing angle. Slick tyres remained prevalent, however.
Fortec's Alexander Rossi will join Wickens on the front row of this afternoon's race. The Aragon winner showed no ill affects from his heavy accident at Monaco last month.
"My ankle recovered pretty quickly," said Rossi. "I was just getting headaches for about a week after the crash, which made training difficult, but I feel fine now. I am so pleased to be back on the pace for qualifying."
After building up to speed in practice, Tech 1 Racing's Kevin Korjus again delivered in qualifying to take third. The 18-year-old Formula Renault Eurocup champion edged out Daniel Ricciardo (ISR) by just 0.052s.
Championship leader Jean-Eric Vergne was fifth fastest for Carlin, and the Frenchman will be joined on the third row this afternoon by Rossi's Fortec team-mate Cesar Ramos.
Series returnee - and 2009 championship runner-up - Fairuz Fauzy took eighth for his family Mofaz team. The Malaysian has stepped in after previous incumbent Chris van der Drift encountered budget difficulties. Brazilian rookie Andre Negrao celebrated his birthday by claiming a solid 10th.
Negrao's Draco team-mate Stephane Richelmi caused the session to be red-flagged following an incident at Turn 6. As a consequence, the Monegasque had his fastest time deleted and drops to 24th, one place ahead of 2011 season debutant Michael Herck (Pons).
Pos Driver Team Time Gap 1. Robert Wickens Carlin 1m44.782s 2. Alexander Rossi Fortec 1m45.147s + 0.365s 3. Kevin Korjus Tech 1 1m45.415s + 0.633s 4. Daniel Ricciardo ISR 1m45.467s + 0.685s 5. Jean-Eric Vergne Carlin 1m45.578s + 0.796s 6. Cesar Ramos Fortec 1m45.776s + 0.994s 7. Nathanael Berthon ISR 1m45.815s + 1.033s 8. Fairuz Fauzy Mofaz 1m45.822s + 1.040s 9. Nelson Panciatici KMP 1m46.276s + 1.494s 10. Andre Negrao Draco 1m46.434s + 1.652s 11. Walter Grubmuller P1 1m46.435s + 1.653s 12. Brendon Hartley Gravity-Charouz 1m46.493s + 1.711s 13. Sergio Canamasas BVM Target 1m46.506s + 1.724s 14. Jake Rosenzweig Mofaz 1m46.512s + 1.730s 15. Oliver Webb Pons 1m46.552s + 1.770s 16. Albert Costa Epic 1m46.573s + 1.791s 17. Daniil Move P1 1m46.576s + 1.794s 18. Sten Pentus Epic 1m46.754s + 1.972s 19. Arthur Pic Tech 1 1m46.821s + 2.039s 20. Jan Charouz Gravity-Charouz 1m46.901s + 2.119s 21. Daniel Zampieri BVM Target 1m46.968s + 2.186s 22. Anton Nebylitskiy KMP 1m47.037s + 2.255s 23. Michael Herck Pons 1m47.353s + 2.571s 24. Stephane Richelmi Draco 1m47.455s + 2.673s 25. Daniel de Jong Comtec 1m47.666s + 2.884s 26. Daniel McKenzie Comtec 1m48.457s + 3.675s