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?

Next article

Spa British F3: Nicholas Latifi claims first poles of racing career

Spa British F3: Nicholas Latifi claims first poles of racing career
Load comments

About this article

Series FIA F3
Author Marcus Simmons
Why Correa's return is the feelgood story racing needed Plus

Why Correa's return is the feelgood story racing needed

Juan Manuel Correa has had a long road to recovery from that horrific day at Spa in 2019. ART's decision to give him his race return in FIA Formula 3 in 2021 is a victory in itself, but his determination will surely - in time - have him fighting for bigger things

FIA F3
Feb 2, 2021
Why Piastri's F3 title was better than results suggested Plus

Why Piastri's F3 title was better than results suggested

F3 rookie Oscar Piastri only just snatched the 2020 title with Prema Racing, but the setbacks he overcame to do so suggest that Renault's next Australian talent is one destined for the top

FIA F3
Jan 12, 2021
The ground-effect wonder behind a generation of F1 stars Plus

The ground-effect wonder behind a generation of F1 stars

Recently named as Autosport's greatest single-seater, Ralt's RT3 launched a plethora of superstar drivers through the early 1980s, and established the constructor as the go-to place for your single-seater weapon

FIA F3
Dec 8, 2020
The Macau GP's greatest moments Plus

The Macau GP's greatest moments

Coronavirus restrictions mean this weekend's Macau GP will have a very different feel, with the usual F3 jamboree replaced by Chinese F4. But in past years, the event has provided some seminal moments in the careers of future world champions

FIA F3
Nov 20, 2020
Rating the prospects of the 2020 F3 title contenders Plus

Rating the prospects of the 2020 F3 title contenders

With the title race finely poised ahead of the final triple-header, a category returnee who raced George Russell in his F3 days lends Autosport his thoughts on the ones to watch

FIA F3
Aug 25, 2020
Why "whirlwind" Tauranac's legacy will stand the test of time Plus

Why "whirlwind" Tauranac's legacy will stand the test of time

The passing of Ralt boss Ron Tauranac last week drew tributes from around the world, not least from the bosses of three prominent teams on whom the Australian designer made a lasting impression

FIA F3
Jul 24, 2020
The young driver Red Bull couldn't ignore Plus

The young driver Red Bull couldn't ignore

Igor Fraga has a more colourful career behind him than any other driver on the FIA Formula 3 grid, and now he's beginning to become as recognised for his talents in real racing as in the virtual world

FIA F3
Jun 21, 2020
The new F3 car that has teams purring Plus

The new F3 car that has teams purring

Dallara has improved upon its old F3 car with the new 320 for this season's Euroformula Open, ensuring that single-seater competition's 'heritage’ category can race into the future

FIA F3
Apr 14, 2020