Chilton takes Silverstone F3 pole

British Formula 3 veteran Max Chilton will start the first race of round two at Silverstone this weekend from pole position after setting the pace in first qualifying this morning

Chilton takes Silverstone F3 pole

The Carlin driver lapped the Grand Prix loop in a 1m39.798s best at the midway point of the session to clam his fourth career pole by just 0.021s from series debutant Renger van der Zande.

"That was nearly the perfect lap," said a delighted Chilton, who had previously claimed pole for the first race at Oulton Park last month before making a poor start.

"There were a couple of small errors, but absolutely the most minor really. I followed Nick Tandy on the first big straight and Wayne Boyd on the other, so I got two good tows, which helped. Hopefully we can do it [right] in the race this time."

Chilton's team-mate and championship leader Daniel Ricciardo joined the action late and then promptly crashed at Copse when beginning what should have been his quickest lap, leaving him mired in 11th on the grid.

Meanwhile, van der Zande continued his steady improvement since joining the category on Friday by setting second fastest time for Hitech Racing.

"After 39 laps on this track that's pretty good," said the Dutchman, who finished fourth in the F3 Euro Series last season. His 1m39.819s best put him 0.048s clear of Brazilian Adriano Buzaid, who produced a late flurry to claim a season's best third place on the grid for erstwhile struggler T-Sport.

Japanese F3 convert Daisuke Nakajima set the early pace and was the first driver to break the 1m40s barrier. The Raikkonen Robertson Racer's 1m39.911s best was good enough for row two, just ahead of Fortec's Riki Christodoulou, who rounded out the top five.

Nick Tandy's struggles with his Mygale-Mercedes continued this morning and he could only manage a lap good enough for 15th on the grid.

The JTR driver was the only driver to go slower than he did in free practice and the two tenths he lost compared with yesterday left him nearly 1.5s adrift of the pace.

Conversely, reigning British Formula Ford champion Wayne Boyd found nearly 1.5s compared with yesterday and set the 10th fastest time, albeit 0.676s adrift of team-mate Buzaid.

Pos Driver Team Car Time Gap 1. Max Chilton Carlin D/V 1m39.798s 2. Renger van der Zande Hitech D/M 1m39.819s + 0.021s 3. Adriano Buzaid T-Sport D/V 1m39.867s + 0.069s 4. Daisuke Nakajima Double R D/M 1m39.911s + 0.113s 5. Riki Christodoulou Fortec D/M 1m39.929s + 0.131s 6. Walter Grubmuller Hitech D/M 1m40.201s + 0.403s 7. Henry Arundel Carlin D/V 1m40.327s + 0.529s 8. Oliver Oakes Carlin D/V 1m40.376s + 0.578s 9. Carlos Huertas Double R D/M 1m40.424s + 0.626s 10. Wayne Boyd T-Sport D/V 1m40.543s + 0.745s 11. Daniel Ricciardo Carlin D/V 1m40.905s + 1.107s 12. Victor Garcia Fortec D/M 1m40.949s + 1.151s 13. Gabriel Dias T-Sport D/H 1m40.974s + 1.176s 14. Daniel McKenzie Fortec D/M 1m41.111s + 1.313s 15. Nick Tandy JTR M/M 1m41.210s + 1.412s 16. Hywel Lloyd CF Racing D/H 1m41.323s + 1.525s 17. Victor Correa Litespeed S/H 1m43.201s + 3.403s 18. Stephane Richelmi Barazi D/M 1m43.431s + 3.633s 19. Max Snegirev West-Tec D/H 1m44.142s + 4.344s 
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