Prema’s Andrea Kimi Antonelli was fastest in both Formula Regional European Championship practice sessions at Zandvoort as strong winds and rain made driving extremely difficult.
Frequent stoppages disrupted both sessions, each ended early by red flags.
Rafael Camara was second fastest overall, just 0.034 seconds shy of team-mate Antonelli, with R-ace GP’s Tim Tramnitz and Race Performance Motorsport’s Maceo Capietto third and fourth.
Although the morning rain abated for the start of FP1, track conditions remained tricky throughout and restricted the field to wet tyre running, although with the weather forecast predicting showers throughout the weekend, the experience could prove valuable.
Red flags waved before any laptimes were set, as Monolite Racing’s Giovanni Maschio went off on the exit of turn six. The session restarted eight minutes in but was stopped again seven minutes later as G4 Racing’s debuting Francisco Soldavini pulled off on the run to turn 11.
No driver had completed more than four laps at that point, and Kas Haverkort was fastest ahead of Roman Bilinski and Victor Bernier, while Alessandro Giusti, Niels Koolen and Prema’s trio did not have any laptimes to their names.
FP1 restarted with 29 minutes to go, and Antonelli quickly moved to the front, ahead of Capietto, who is R-P-M’s sole driver this weekend as Santiago Ramos is absent, seemingly for budgetary reasons.
Antonelli improved again later, the only driver to lap sub-1m43s, with Capietto holding onto second place but almost half a second adrift when red flags ended the session with three minutes left on the clock.
Tramnitz, who topped pre-event testing, was third fastest and just 0.002s ahead of team-mate Martinius Stenshorne. Giusti and Camara completed the top six.
FP2 in the afternoon started in gale force winds and rain, making conditions extremely difficult, although the wind direction from the south boosted speeds along the pit straight. Capietto set the early pace, recording a 1m43.627s on his fourth tour.
Monolite’s debuting Nikita Bedrin initially slotted into second. However, he was quickly demoted by Camara and then Antonelli, the Mercedes-AMG Formula 1 junior going just 0.008s slower than Capietto. Both were slower than the morning pace.
Antonelli moved to the top on his eighth lap with a 1m43.364s, which Capietto was unable to match him despite going fastest in the second and third sectors.
Two laps later Antonelli went faster still, but this time Capietto could match him, a 1m43.091s putting him 0.13s clear at the top. Giusti meanwhile moved up to third, ahead of the evenly matched Tramnitz and Stenshorne.
Going fastest overall in sector three helped propel Van Amersfoort Racing’s Haverkort to third with 20 minutes remaining, and when team-mate Koolen got beached in the gravel at Tarzan it brought out red flags for the first time in FP2.
Running resumed with 10 minutes left, and Antonelli set a 1m42.344s to beat his morning benchmark. Tramnitz briefly moved up to second before a flyer from Camara put him into the position, 0.103s behind his team-mate.
FP2 ended two minutes early after series returnee Pierre-Louis Chovet brought had a red flag-causing incident.
Pierre-Alexandre Provost was the only driver whose fastest lap came in FP1.
Free pracrice results
|1||Andrea Kimi Antonelli||Prema||1m42.344s||18|
|3||Tim Tramnitz||R-ace GP||1m42.720s||+0.376s||20|
|5||Martinius Stenshorne||R-ace GP||1m42.936s||+0.592s||19|
|6||Alessandro Giusti||G4 Racing||1m42.981s||+0.637s||15|
|8||Marcus Amand||ART Grand Prix||1m43.052s||+0.708s||17|
|11||Maya Weug||KIC Motorsport||1m43.182s||+0.838s||20|
|12||Laurens van Hoepen||ART Grand Prix||1m43.184s||+0.840s||15|
|13||Evan Giltaire||ART Grand Prix||1m43.210s||+0.866s||17|
|14||Kas Haverkort||Van Amersfoort Racing||1m43.261s||+0.917s||19|
|15||Matias Zagazeta||R-ace GP||1m43.313s||+0.969s||20|
|16||Nikita Bedrin||Monolite Racing||1m43.347s||+1.003s||19|
|17||Javier Sagrera||MP Motorsport||1m43.426s||+1.082s||20|
|18||Emmo Fittipaldi||Sainteloc Racing||1m43.443s||+1.099s||19|
|19||Victor Bernier||MP Motorsport||1m43.537s||+1.193s||19|
|22||Sami Meguetounif||MP Motorsport||1m43.840s||+1.496s||20|
|23||Ivan Domingues||Van Amersfoort Racing||1m43.952s||+1.608s||18|
|25||Pierre-Louis Chovet||Sainteloc Racing||1m44.176s||+1.832s||18|
|26||Pierre-Alexandre Provost||G4 Racing||1m44.803s||+2.459s||15|
|27||Enzio Scionti||Monolite Racing||1m45.069s||+2.725s||19|
|28||Ivan Klymenko||KIC Motorsport||1m45.276s||+2.932s||19|
|29||Niels Koolen||Van Amersfoort Racing||1m45.322s||+2.978s||15|
|30||Francisco Soldavini||G4 Racing||1m45.871s||+3.527s||19|
|31||Giovanni Maschio||Monolite Racing||1m46.084s||+3.740s||18|
|32||Santiago Ramos||R-P-M||no time|