Rafael Camara led a Prema one-two in the first Formula Regional European Championship practice session at Spa-Francorchamps.
ART Grand Prix’s Laurens van Hoepen set the pace at first, then eight minutes in G4 Racing’s Mikhael Belov and then Monolite Racing’s Kirill Smal went to the top.
Smal was fastest for less than two minutes before Van Amersfoort Racing’s Kas Haverkort posted a 1m16.308s, with Camara rising to second place three tenths of a second behind.
R-ace GP’s test pacesetter Tim Tramnitz split the two 12 minutes in, then on his next lap moved to the top with a 1m16.165s.
The top five went unchanged for over over 20 minutes before G4’s Alessandro Giusti set a 1m16.331s to go third fastest.
That preceded a flurry of improvements across the order as the track became busy again, but VAR’s Niels Koolen stuck trouble and red flags had to be brought out.
Camara had snuck into first place just before then, setting a 1m15.866s to lead ART GP’s Marcus Amand, Prema’s Lorenzo Fluxa and MP Motorsport’s Victor Bernier.
The session restarted with just enough time for two more flying laps to be set by most drivers, and the majority of them set their best laptime on their final effort.
Camara improved to 2m15.442s to keep himself in first, and team-mate Andrea Kimi Antonelli got within 0.083 seconds of him to end FP1 in second place.
Amand found a third of a second in pace to be third, Haverkort was fourth and Belov and was just 0.012s slower than him in fifth.
Dilano van’t Hoff (MP), Smal and Tom Lebbon (Arden) improved as the met the chequered flag to complete the top eight, while Fluxa and Bernier were shuffled down to ninth and 10th.
Tramnitz never bettered his early pace and ended up down in 13th, and ART GP’s series returnee Hadrien David could do no better than 25th place as he was a second-and-a-half off the pace and did not improve after his first two flying laps. FP2 takes place tomorrow afternoon.
Free practice results
|2||Andrea Kimi Antonelli||Prema||2m15.525s||+0.083s||16|
|3||Marcus Amand||ART Grand Prix||2m15.590s||+0.148s||14|
|4||Kas Haverkort||Van Amersfoort Racing||2m15.734s||+0.292s||13|
|5||Michael Belov||G4 Racing||2m15.746s||+0.304s||14|
|6||Dilano van’t Hoff||MP Motorsport||2m15.860s||+0.418s||14|
|7||Kirill Smal||Monolite Racing||2m15.946s||+0.504s||10|
|10||Victor Bernier||MP Motorsport||2m16.001s||+0.559s||12|
|12||Laurens Van Hoepen||ART Grand Prix||2m16.098s||+0.656s||13|
|13||Tim Tramnitz||R-ace GP||2m16.165s||+0.723s||13|
|16||Alessandro Giusti||G4 Racing||2m16.331s||+0.889s||12|
|19||Sami Meguetounif||MP Motorsport||2m16.526s||+1.084s||14|
|20||Esteban Masson||Sainteloc Racing||2m16.569s||+1.127s||15|
|21||Martinius Stenshorne||R-ace GP||2m16.675s||+1.233s||18|
|22||Maya Weug||KIC Motorsport||2m16.784s||+1.342s||14|
|23||Joshua Dufek||Van Amersfoort Racing||2m16.958s||+1.516s||13|
|25||Hadrien David||ART Grand Prix||2m16.972s||+1.530s||12|
|27||Enzo Scionti||Monolite Racing||2m17.013s||+1.571s||11|
|29||Emmo Fittipaldi||Sainteloc Racing||2m17.207s||+1.765s||14|
|30||Alex Partyshev||KIC Motorsport||2m17.305s||+1.863s||13|
|31||Matias Zagazeta||R-ace GP||2m17.325s||+1.883s||17|
|32||Lucas Medina||Sainteloc Racing||2m17.939s||+2.497s||15|
|33||Niels Koolen||Van Amersfoort Racing||2m18.295s||+2.853s||11|
|34||Giovanni Maschio||Monolite Racing||2m20.366s||+4.924s||12|