Oulton Park qualifying: Carlins on form

It was more the Carlin buds of May than the darling buds of May at Oulton Park on Sunday as Carlin Motorsport's two drivers took a pole position apiece for Monday's fourth round of the British Formula 3 Championship on the May Day Bank Holiday

Oulton Park qualifying: Carlins on form

Appropriately, as the sun made an appearance for the first time this season, it was a driver from the land of the rising sun who took pole for the first race, Takuma Sato edging out his team mate Anthony Davidson. But Davidson turned the tables in the second qualifying session, as Sato took a disappointing fourth.

Davidson was looking good in the first session, but a late run by Sato, despite warmer track conditions and tyres which were past their best, put the Japanese on pole by just 0.016 seconds.

"I could have gone quicker if I'd done it earlier in the session," he said, "but the session went well finally."

In the second session, Davidson and Team Avanti twins Matt Davies and Milos Pavlovic went out on new tyres, whereas most of the other leading runners initially went out on scrubbed rubber before switching to then newer Avons. An overcast period a few minutes into the session meant that this trio were able to set unbeatable times while the opposition languished in the pits or on out laps, and meant Davidson headed Davies, with Pavlovic a season-best seventh.

"It was good engineering by Adrian [Burgess]," said Davidson. "I'm so happy - it was the lap you dream of around here. I came on the radio straight away and said 'I don't think I can go any quicker than that', but the team didn't want me to give up so I cooled the tyres off and tried again.

"It was just like my European karting days when I was up against Jenson [Button] and Kimi [Raikkonen] - going out on fresh tyres and knowing I only had two or three laps to do it."

Manor Motorsport's Derek Hayes kept up his incredibly consistent season, the championship leader claiming third on the grid for both races. In the first he felt he could have had pole but for a big moment at Cascades.

Sato, meanwhile, ended the second session in fourth, feeling as though he had an unbalanced tyre, which will be checked out by Avon technicians before the races on Monday.

Jaguar's Andre Lotterer looked good and took fourth in the first session, but stayed still as others improved later on to place eighth on the grid for race two behind Jamie Spence, Nicolas Kiesa and Pavlovic.

Robbie Kerr heads the Scholarship Class for both races, although series leader Matt Gilmore was lucky to make the grid of race one - his engine had lapsed onto three cylinders and, once the problem was cured, he made the cut with two laps to spare.

Takuma Sato (Carlin Motorsport Dallara-Mugen) 1:29.681
Anthony Davidson (Carlin Motorsport Dallara-Mugen) 1:29.697
Derek Hayes (Manor Motorsport Dallara-Mugen) 1:29.751
Andre Lotterer (Jaguar Racing Dallara-Mugen) 1:30.085
Matt Davies (Team Avanti Dallara-Opel) 1:30.108
Gianmaria Bruni (Fortec Renault Dallara-Renault) 1:30.229
Nicolas Kiesa (RC Motorsport Dallara-Opel) 1:30.236
Bruce Jouanny (Promatecme Dallara-Mugen) 1:30.452
Andy Priaulx (Alan Docking Racing Dallara-Mugen) 1:30.477
Mark Taylor (Manor Motorsport Dallara-Mugen) 1:30.543
Kerr (Fred Goddard Racing Dallara-Renault) 1:31.860


Pos, Driver, Car, Time
1 Davidson 1:29.580
Davies 1:29.692
Hayes 1:29.736
Sato 1:29.899
Jamie Spence (Duma Racing Dallara-Mugen) 1:29.925
Kiesa 1:30.006
Milos Pavlovic (Team Avanti Dallara-Opel) 1:30.020
Lotterer 1:30.075
Taylor 1:30.186
Priaulx 1:30.253
Kerr 1:31.835

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