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Nyck de Vries: Formula 2 testing pace “doesn’t mean anything”

by Jake Williams-Smith

Photo: Glenn Dunbar / FIA F2 Championship

Nyck de Vries has played down his test-topping performances in Formula 2 with ART Grand Prix this winter.

The Dutchman was 0.239 seconds clear of the field in the second pre-season test at Barcelona, where he topped three of the six sessions, and was fifth at Jerez, where he was also fastest in three of the six sessions.

His Barcelona time would’ve put him on pole for the 2018 race at the circuit, but the Dutchman was reserved in his assessment of his pace.

?Well, it?s only testing so far so it?s very early to judge,? he told Formula Scout.

De Vries, who won three races in F2 last season and finished fourth in the standings with Prema, was bullish about his chances ahead of the 2019 season, but was quick to point out that the points were handed out later.

“We?ve been competitive, which is positive, but it doesn?t mean anything yet. No points are given [for testing], so it?s good, but we?ve got to stay focused and look forward to the start of the season.”

This will de Vries’ third season in F2, having spent the first season with Rapax and then Racing Engineering. He graduated to the series after finishing sixth in GP3 with ART Grand Prix.

When asked how if it felt good to be back at ART, de Vries responded: “Definitely. It feels like coming home.”

ART won the F2 driver’s championship last year with George Russell, and finished second in the team standings. Were it not for multiple technical issues with the new Dallara F2 2018 car, the team would likely have won the double title.