GP2 Bahrain: Mitch Evans beats F1 juniors to set practice pace

Mitch Evans began the 2014 GP2 Series by setting the fastest time in Friday's practice for Russian Time, heading two Formula 1 proteges from McLaren and Ferrari in the process

GP2 Bahrain: Mitch Evans beats F1 juniors to set practice pace

Free practice has been extended by 15 minutes to 45 for 2014, with an extra set of the prime (hard) tyre available, although the additional track time was shunned by many in the early stages as one of the three-day pre-season tests was held in Bahrain.

When the serious running did get underway, rookie Arthur Pic set the initial pace on the return of the Campos Racing name to the series, before Evans topped the times for the iSport-run Russian Time squad with a 1m42.062s which would remain the fastest lap until the end of the session.

The Formula 1 juniors then came into the equation, with first McLaren's Stoffel Vandoorne (ART) and then Ferrari's Raffaele Marciello (Racing Engineering) annexing P2.

Vandoorne made the position his own with a second flyer just 0.062s slower than Evans's best.

Daniel Abt was fourth fastest for Hilmer Motorsport, which is running in Force India colours this season, ahead of Stephane Richelmi (DAMS), Rio Haryanto (Caterham) and Andre Negrao (Arden).

Of the other pre-season title favourites, Jolyon Palmer was eighth for DAMS and Stefano Coletti was 12th for Racing Engineering, while Carlin's Felipe Nasr, who will make his Formula 1 debut running for Williams in FP1 after this session, could only manage the 16th fastest time.

Nasr's team-mate Julian Leal briefly understeered off at Turn 11 before spinning properly at Turn 13.

Rookie Facu Regalia had a moment at Turn 13 in his Hilmer machine, but escaped unscathed, while Caterham junior Alexander Rossi suffered a lock-up at Turn 11 and ran wide.

Daniel de Jong stopped on track with two minutes to go, causing a red flag and prematurely ending the session.

Pos Driver Team Time Gap Laps 1. Mitch Evans Russian Time 1m42.062s 11 2. Stoffel Vandoorne ART 1m42.124s +0.062s 12 3. Raffaele Marciello Racing Engineering 1m42.269s +0.207s 13 4. Daniel Abt Hilmer 1m42.319s +0.257s 10 5. Stephane Richelmi DAMS 1m42.373s +0.311s 12 6. Rio Haryanto Caterham 1m42.388s +0.326s 12 7. Andre Negrao Arden 1m42.507s +0.445s 12 8. Jolyon Palmer DAMS 1m42.533s +0.471s 12 9. Simon Trummer Rapax 1m42.553s +0.491s 13 10. Conor Daly Lazarus 1m42.574s +0.512s 14 11. Takuya Izawa ART 1m42.606s +0.544s 11 12. Stefano Coletti Racing Engineering 1m42.607s +0.545s 12 13. Arthur Pic Campos 1m42.629s +0.567s 11 14. Daniiel De Jong MP 1m42.653s +0.591s 14 15. Julian Leal Carlin 1m42.664s +0.602s 12 16. Felipe Nasr Carlin 1m42.707s +0.645s 11 17. Alexander Rossi Caterham 1m42.959s +0.897s 13 18. Johnny Cecotto Trident 1m42.984s +0.922s 12 19. Adrian Quaife-Hobbs Rapax 1m42.997s +0.935s 11 20. Rene Binder Arden 1m43.071s +1.009s 11 21. Jon Lancaster MP 1m43.076s +1.014s 11 22. Nathanael Berthon Lazarus 1m43.307s +1.245s 12 23. Facu Regalia Hilmer 1m43.547s +1.485s 13 24. Artem Markelov Russian Time 1m43.815s +1.753s 10 25. Axcil Jefferies Trident 1m43.842s +1.780s 16 26. Kimiya Sato Campos 1m44.243s +2.181s 11 
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Series FIA F2
Author Charles Bradley
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