GP2 Silverstone: Nato on pole pending stewards investigation

Norman Nato bounced back to form to set the fastest time in qualifying for the GP2 Series round at Silverstone, but he may not get to keep his pole position

GP2 Silverstone: Nato on pole pending stewards investigation

The Frenchman's Racing Engineering car crossed the line to set its quickest lap just as the red lights came on because Oliver Rowland had parked in The Loop with a flat battery.

Stewards will look into whether the lap was completed after the red flag, or whether it was moments before.

Nato had been second quickest on the first runs behind compatriot Pierre Gasly, and his second run moved him 0.356 seconds in front.

After the stoppage, Gasly trimmed the deficit to 0.225s, and the Prema Racing-run Red Bull junior would inherit pole if Nato's time is taken away.

"On my first run I made a few mistakes so I knew I would be able to improve on my second set," said Nato.

"The car was very good - I just told the engineer to leave the car how it was, because I knew I could improve on just my driving."

Nicholas Latifi took third fastest with a late effort in the DAMS car, and will move up onto the front row in the event of Nato losing his best lap.

If the stewards do delete that time, Nato's first-run best would put him third, although that was equalled to the thousandth by a last-minute effort from Russian Time's series leader Raffaele Marciello.

Sergey Sirotkin's first-run effort put him fifth on the grid for ART Grand Prix, although the Russian also faces an anxious wait as he is investigated for failing to stop at the weighbridge.

Sixth fastest was Prema's Antonio Giovinazzi, with Mitch Evans (Campos Racing) and Jordan King (Racing Engineering) - the two winners last weekend in Austria - taking seventh and eighth.

Arthur Pic was ninth with Rapax, while Rowland's early time in his MP Motorsport car was enough to give him 10th in the order despite failing to complete the session.

It was a disastrous qualifying for Alex Lynn, who reported that something was wrong with the chassis of his DAMS car over the radio and took a lowly 17th in the times.

Lynn will move up to 16th as 14th-fastest Sergio Canamasas has a three-place grid drop for unsporting behaviour - which included a wealth of gesticulation - towards Rowland after the chequered flag in free practice.

Apart from Rowland, two other cars failed to last the distance.

Luca Ghiotto parked on his out-lap. The Italian also stopped in free practice with suspected interference to a sensor, but is unsure what caused his qualifying glitch.

Nabil Jeffri also stopped his car, causing the first of two red flags.

QUALIFYING RESULTS:

Pos Driver Team Time Gap Laps
1 Norman Nato Racing Engineering 1m38.216s - 11
2 Pierre Gasly Prema Racing 1m38.441s 0.225s 10
3 Nicholas Latifi DAMS 1m38.797s 0.581s 10
4 Raffaele Marciello RUSSIAN TIME 1m38.842s 0.626s 9
5 Sergey Sirotkin ART Grand Prix 1m38.904s 0.688s 10
6 Antonio Giovinazzi Prema Racing 1m38.912s 0.696s 10
7 Mitch Evans Pertamina Campos Racing 1m39.084s 0.868s 9
8 Jordan King Racing Engineering 1m39.123s 0.907s 10
9 Arthur Pic Rapax 1m39.160s 0.944s 11
10 Oliver Rowland MP Motorsport 1m39.192s 0.976s 5
11 Artem Markelov RUSSIAN TIME 1m39.370s 1.154s 10
12 Nobuharu Matsushita ART Grand Prix 1m39.572s 1.356s 10
13 Marvin Kirchhofer Carlin 1m39.668s 1.452s 10
14 Sergio Canamasas Carlin 1m39.749s 1.533s 10
15 Sean Gelael Pertamina Campos Racing 1m39.750s 1.534s 8
16 Gustav Malja Rapax 1m39.798s 1.582s 11
17 Alex Lynn DAMS 1m39.928s 1.712s 11
18 Daniel de Jong MP Motorsport 1m40.459s 2.243s 11
19 Jimmy Eriksson Arden International 1m40.838s 2.622s 10
20 Nabil Jeffri Arden International 1m41.160s 2.944s 4
21 Philo Paz Armand Trident 1m41.385s 3.169s 10

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GP2 Silverstone: Norman Nato survives investigation to keep pole

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