Matheo Tuscher took his third pole position of the season ahead of the opening Formula 2 race of the weekend at Paul Ricard.
With each driver having one set of fresh tyres to use, strategies varied. Christopher Zanella opted to use his at the start of the session, a tactic that gave him the limelight for the first 15 minutes, lapping 1.3 seconds faster than any of his rivals. The track conditions continued to improve, though, so when Zanella's rivals took to the circuit with their fresh tyres later in the session, the Swiss driver was dropped down to fifth place.
It was a duel between Tuscher and Markus Pommer for pole, the two trading fastest times in an enthralling end to the session. Tuscher won out, 0.190s quicker than Pommer - who claimed he lost time on his fastest lap after being blocked.
Daniel McKenzie left it late, but managed to claim third position. The Briton was disappointed not to be on pole position, but felt that the plentiful overtaking opportunities would still allow him to challenge for victory. Luciano Bacheta set myriad fastest sector times, but was unable to link them all together into one lap, meaning the points leader will start fourth on the grid, ahead of Zanella.
Dino Zamparelli was a close sixth place, with Alex Fontana and Mihai Marinescu struggling after their strong practice performances, ending in seventh and eighth respectively. Brands Hatch race winner Kevin Mirocha could not continue his form from last weekend, qualifying ninth, with Plamen Kralev completing the top 10.
Pos Driver Time Gap 1. Matheo Tuscher 1m53.023s 2. Markus Pommer 1m53.213s + 0.190s 3. Daniel McKenzie 1m53.395s + 0.372s 4. Luciano Bacheta 1m53.430s + 0.407s 5. Christopher Zanella 1m53.588s + 0.565s 6. Dino Zamparelli 1m53.594s + 0.571s 7. Alex Fontana 1m53.688s + 0.665s 8. Mihai Marinescu 1m53.764s + 0.741s 9. Kevin Mirocha 1m53.766s + 0.743s 10. Plamen Kralev 1m54.150s + 1.127s 11. Hector Hurst 1m54.278s + 1.255s 12. Mauro Calamia 1m54.709s + 1.686s 13. Axcil Jefferies 1m54.922s + 1.899s 14. David Zhu 1m54.977s + 1.954s