Spa British F3: Nicholas Latifi ends free practice on top

Nicholas Latifi ended the two free practice sessions for this weekend's British Formula 3 International Series round at Spa on top of the times

Spa British F3: Nicholas Latifi ends free practice on top

The Canadian's time from the morning session, which was 0.765 seconds clear of Carlin team-mate Jordan King, was unbeaten in the afternoon's 35-minute period, in which Latifi was one of only two drivers not to improve.

King topped that session with a last-lap effort to pip Latifi by just seven thousandths of a second.

The other Carlin driver, Jann Mardenborough, was just one hundredth off the pace as he gears up for a busy weekend in which he will also contest the Spa 24 Hours in a Nissan.

The second session began on a track that was damp off line after a heavy lunchtime shower, but it soon dried out in the hot sunshine.

Latifi's effort was particularly strong as he has never raced at the Belgian track, while King competed here in Formula Renault last year and Mardenborough raced in last year's 24 Hours.

King said: "There's only eight of us [in the International Class], and with the weather changing it's hard for us to judge how we're going, and some people are on new tyres and some not. It's all a bit random, but I think we're all right."

Antonio Giovinazzi was half a second clear of Sean Gelael as the Double R Racing pair ended fourth and fifth, with team-mate Tatiana Calderon eighth.

Pre-weekend favourite Will Buller, who took maximum points at Spa in the two non-reversed-grid British F3 races in 2011, edged out Fortec team-mate Felipe Guimaraes for sixth, as the squad worked on experimenting before qualifying later today.

In the three-car National Class, China's Sun Zheng was more than two seconds clear of his opposition.

 Practice one Pos Driver Team/Car Time Gap  1. Nicholas Latifi Carlin Dallara-VW 2m16.419s 2. Jordan King Carlin Dallara-VW 2m17.184s +0.765 3. Jann Mardenborough Carlin Dallara-VW 2m17.225s +0.806 4. Antonio Giovinazzi Double R Dallara-Merc 2m18.303s +1.884 5. Tatiana Calderon Double R Dallara-Merc 2m18.923s +2.504 6. Felipe Guimaraes Fortec Dallara-Merc 2m19.039s +2.620 7. Will Buller Fortec Dallara-Merc 2m19.094s +2.675 8. Sean Gelael Double R Dallara-Merc 2m19.273s +2.854 9. Sun Zheng CF Dallara-Mugen 2m21.913s +5.494 Nat 10. Jordan Oon West-Tec Dallara-Toyota 2m23.324s +6.905 Nat 11. Chris Vlok West-Tec Dallara-Toyota 2m24.761s +8.342 Nat Practice two Pos Driver Team/Car Time Gap  1. Jordan King Carlin Dallara-VW 2m16.708s 2. Nicholas Latifi Carlin Dallara-VW 2m16.715s +0.007s 3. Antonio Giovinazzi Double R Dallara-Merc 2m16.718s +0.010s 4. Jann Mardenborough Carlin Dallara-VW 2m17.243s +0.535s 5. Sean Gelael Double R Dallara-Merc 2m17.792s +1.084s 6. Will Buller Fortec Dallara-Merc 2m17.825s +1.117s 7. Felipe Guimaraes Fortec Dallara-Merc 2m17.925s +1.217s 8. Tatiana Calderon Double R Dallara-Merc 2m18.844s +2.136s 9. Sun Zheng CF Dallara-Mugen 2m20.463s +3.755s Nat 10. Jordan Oon West-Tec Dallara-Toyota 2m22.722s +6.014s Nat 11. Chris Vlok West-Tec Dallara-Toyota 2m25.103s +8.395s Nat 
shares
comments
How good is this year's European F3 field?
Previous article

How good is this year's European F3 field?

What racing in Australia means for the future of F1's junior series Plus

What racing in Australia means for the future of F1's junior series

The announcement that FIA Formula 2 and 3 would race alongside the Australian Grand Prix from 2023 came as a surprise, not only to fans but to the series’ teams too. But with Formula 1’s boom in popularity bringing more fans to the championships, team principals are relishing the opportunity

FIA F2
Jun 28, 2022
Why the Formula 3 benchmark's 2022 season hinges on qualifying Plus

Why the Formula 3 benchmark's 2022 season hinges on qualifying

Prema Racing has long dominated FIA Formula 3, taking the teams’ title in two of the past three seasons. But its start to 2022 has been trickier than usual, and the answers lie in its qualifying performance

FIA F3
May 27, 2022
How the ultra-tight F3 title fight is taking shape Plus

How the ultra-tight F3 title fight is taking shape

With just five points separating the top five after two rounds, FIA Formula 3 looks set for another thrilling season in 2022. But who stands the best chance of pulling away from that pack, and who are the contenders bubbling under?

FIA F3
May 3, 2022
The F3 newcomer making good on his unusual career path Plus

The F3 newcomer making good on his unusual career path

Joining the FIA Formula 3 grid as a rookie with a team new to the series could prove daunting for most, but then there aren't many drivers who have the extensive experience Franco Colapinto brings from his time racing sportscars. The Argentinian explains how his LMP2 experience is already helping him in 2022

FIA F3
Mar 27, 2022
The British trio hunting for F3 title glory Plus

The British trio hunting for F3 title glory

The 2022 FIA Formula 3 season kicks off this weekend in Bahrain. British trio Zak O’Sullivan, Ollie Bearman and Jonny Edgar have all become proteges of Formula 1 teams, and are talents to watch this year

FIA F3
Mar 18, 2022
How an outsider demolished a rank of F1 juniors Plus

How an outsider demolished a rank of F1 juniors

His career has been a slowburner but Gregoire Saucy trounced a collection of F1 juniors in Formula Regional by Alpine last year, and now he’s preparing to do it again in FIA F3. Here’s how the Swiss caught the world by surprise in 2021 and how he plans to do it all over again

Ranking the top 10 F2 and F3 drivers of 2021 Plus

Ranking the top 10 F2 and F3 drivers of 2021

With a veritable feast of feeder series talent in 2021, FIA Formula 2 and Formula 3 produced some of its most exciting racing yet. Although Prema Racing drivers once again dominated the respective series, drivers from other teams also stole the limelight to mark themselves out as stars of the future, or validate their highly-regarded standing

FIA F2
Dec 22, 2021
How Prema continued its dominance of F1's junior ladder in 2021 Plus

How Prema continued its dominance of F1's junior ladder in 2021

Taking three of the four titles and producing two outstanding champions in the process, Prema Racing remained the team to beat in Formula 1's feeder series in 2021. Team boss Rene Rosin reveals the traits that helped Dennis Hauger and Oscar Piastri to come out on top in Formula 3 and Formula 2

FIA F2
Dec 20, 2021