George Russell fastest, Alessio Lorandi on Pau Grand Prix pole

George Russell topped second Pau Formula 3 European Championship qualifying to claim race two pole, but Alessio Lorandi earned prime spot for the Pau Grand Prix itself

George Russell fastest, Alessio Lorandi on Pau Grand Prix pole

Russell's time came at the last gasp, the Briton crossing the line just before the chequered flag and completing a lap in his Hitech Grand Prix Dallara-Mercedes that propelled him from fifth to first in his group.

Qualifying again took place on a wet track. Although the rain stopped and the sun appeared for the second group, it was only with two minutes remaining that Lorandi became the first to dip under the time Callum Ilott had set to top the opening batch.

Sergio Sette Camara then briefly moved onto pole, before Russell's lap brought the session to a fitting climax.

"The track was at that greasy stage and I wasn't entirely happy with the car balance," said Russell.

"I caught traffic and backed off and said to the team, 'How much do I need to find?' They said, 'Four tenths' and I said 'Oh, right' and pulled my finger out basically."

Van Amersfoort Racing man Ilott was philosophical that his first-session topper, which came after a battle with Prema Powerteam duo Lance Stroll and Nick Cassidy, was beaten.

"I did the best with what it is," said Ilott, who will start second for race two. "The weather was annoying but you can't change it."

Traditional Carlin expertise on track positioning of its driver enabled Lorandi to get a clear circuit for most of the session, and his second-best time - set on the final lap - dislodged Sette Camara from pole for race three, which holds the Grand Prix title.

Stroll, fourth on the grid for race two, will start alongside the Italian on the front row for the GP, while Cassidy moves up from sixth for race two to fourth for the GP and Ilott drops to sixth for Sunday's finale behind Russell.

Ralf Aron and Ben Barnicoat completed the top five in the quicker group so will start seventh and ninth for race two, but Aron's relatively poor second-best promotes Barnicoat and Carlin's Ryan Tveter to those positions for the GP.

In the slower session it was Mikkel Jensen and Anthoine Hubert who took eighth and 10th on the grid for both races.

It was a disastrous session for championship leader Maximilian Gunther, who crashed early on at the Foch chicane and caused a red flag, consigning him to the back of the grid.

Others to crash were Guan Yu Zhou and Pedro Piquet (who brought the first session to a red-flagged conclusion one lap early), while debutant David Beckmann did well to salvage sixth in his group with a deranged rear wing.

RACE TWO GRID

Pos Driver Team Car Time
1 George Russell Hitech GP Dallara/Mercedes 1m21.281s
2 Callum Ilott Van Amersfoort Racing Dallara/Mercedes 1m21.708s
3 Sergio Sette Camara Motopark Dallara/Volkswagen 1m21.371s
4 Lance Stroll Prema Powerteam Dallara/Mercedes 1m21.968s
5 Alessio Lorandi Carlin Dallara/Volkswagen 1m21.530s
6 Nick Cassidy Prema Powerteam Dallara/Mercedes 1m22.200s
7 Ralf Aron Prema Powerteam Dallara/Mercedes 1m21.638s
8 Mikkel Jensen kfzteile Mucke Motorsport Dallara/Mercedes 1m22.370s
9 Ben Barnicoat Hitech GP Dallara/Mercedes 1m21.667s
10 Anthoine Hubert Van Amersfoort Racing Dallara/Mercedes 1m22.513s
11 Ryan Tveter Carlin Dallara/Volkswagen 1m21.869s
12 David Beckmann kfzteile Mucke Motorsport Dallara/Mercedes 1m23.050s
13 Joel Eriksson Motopark Dallara/Volkswagen 1m21.920s
14 Pedro Piquet Van Amersfoort Racing Dallara/Mercedes 1m24.050s
15 Nikita Mazepin Hitech GP Dallara/Mercedes 1m22.283s
16 Arjun Maini ThreeBond with T-Sport Dallara/NBE 1m25.877s
17 Harrison Newey Van Amersfoort Racing Dallara/Mercedes 1m22.933s
18 Guanyu Zhou Motopark Dallara/Volkswagen -
19 Maximilian Guenther Prema Powerteam Dallara/Mercedes 1m22.938s
20 Niko Kari Motopark Dallara/Volkswagen 1m23.474s
21 Zhi Cong Li Carlin Dallara/Volkswagen 1m23.658s

RACE THREE GRID

Pos Driver Team Car Time
1 Alessio Lorandi Carlin Dallara/Volkswagen 1m21.586s
2 Lance Stroll Prema Powerteam Dallara/Mercedes 1m22.153s
3 Sergio Sette Camara Motopark Dallara/Volkswagen 1m21.652s
4 Nick Cassidy Prema Powerteam Dallara/Mercedes 1m22.374s
5 George Russell Hitech GP Dallara/Mercedes 1m21.728s
6 Callum Ilott Van Amersfoort Racing Dallara/Mercedes 1m22.407s
7 Ben Barnicoat Hitech GP Dallara/Mercedes 1m21.855s
8 Mikkel Jensen kfzteile Mucke Motorsport Dallara/Mercedes 1m22.440s
9 Ryan Tveter Carlin Dallara/Volkswagen 1m22.074s
10 Anthoine Hubert Van Amersfoort Racing Dallara/Mercedes 1m22.750s
11 Joel Eriksson Motopark Dallara/Volkswagen 1m22.091s
12 David Beckmann kfzteile Mucke Motorsport Dallara/Mercedes 1m23.294s
13 Ralf Aron Prema Powerteam Dallara/Mercedes 1m22.387s
14 Niko Kari Motopark Dallara/Volkswagen 1m23.605s
15 Nikita Mazepin Hitech GP Dallara/Mercedes 1m22.572s
16 Pedro Piquet Van Amersfoort Racing Dallara/Mercedes 1m24.110s
17 Harrison Newey Van Amersfoort Racing Dallara/Mercedes 1m22.956s
18 Arjun Maini ThreeBond with T-Sport Dallara/NBE 1m28.948s
19 Zhi Cong Li Carlin Dallara/Volkswagen 1m23.667s
20 Guanyu Zhou Motopark Dallara/Volkswagen -
21 Maximilian Guenther Prema Powerteam Dallara/Mercedes 1m25.342s

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