Home Formula 3Macau Grand Prix Felix Rosenqvist claims Macau pole in thrilling qualifying

Felix Rosenqvist claims Macau pole in thrilling qualifying

by Peter Allen
Felix Rosenqvist

Photo: Macau Grand Prix

Felix Rosenqvist will bid for back-to-back Macau Grand Prix wins from pole position for the qualification race after topping an enthralling qualifying session.

There was drama before anybody had even set a time when Callum Ilott, after impressively being second to Rosenqvist on Thursday, crashed out at San Francisco and caused a red flag.

On the first lap after the restart, Rosenqvist went underneath his benchmark from the first session, and improved further on his next attempt.

He didn’t have it all his own way though, and his early-season nemesis Charles Leclerc was able to go one hundredth of a second quicker.

Rosenqvist reclaimed top spot with 10 minutes left though as the first driver to go into the 2m10s this week.

2011 winner Juncadella went second and came within 0.046s of Rosenqvist but the Swede then improved further to open up a margin of 0.213s.

That was just before Antonio Giovinazzi crashed at Hospital bend to trigger a red flag. There was 3m44s left on the clock, but with the programme having already been delayed by GT crashes, the decision was taken not to restart.

That left Rosenqvist on pole with his fellow past winner Juncadella alongside him, and Leclerc set to lead Giovinazzi off on row two.

Markus Pommer couldn’t find his pacesetting form from the earlier practice session and had to settle for fifth for Motopark, while Sam MacLeod proved his fourth place in Friday qualifying was no fluke as he set another quick time to be sixth for West-Tec.

The top 10 was completed by four impressively-fast Macau first-timers; Sergio Sette Camara, Arjun Maini, Alessio Lorandi and Lance Stroll.

They outpaced Santino Ferrucci, Mikkel Jensen, Alexander Sims, Jake Dennis and Alexander Albon.

The second-day improvement was such that Ilott’s Thursday time will only be good enough for 18th on the grid, but that will be six places ahead of 2014 podium finisher Nick Cassidy, struggling with TOM’s.

Second qualifying results
Pos Name Team Time Gap Laps
1 Felix Rosenqvist Theodore by Prema 2:10.474 12
2 Daniel Juncadella Fortec 2:10.687 0.213 12
3 Charles Leclerc Van Amersfoort Racing 2:10.796 0.322 13
4 Antonio Giovinazzi Carlin 2:11.034 0.560 13
5 Markus Pommer Motopark 2:11.091 0.617 13
6 Sam MacLeod West-Tec 2:11.523 1.049 12
7 Sergio Sette Camara Motopark 2:11.721 1.247 11
8 Arjun Maini T-Sport 2:11.722 1.248 13
9 Alessio Lorandi Van Amersfoort Racing 2:11.732 1.258 12
10 Lance Stroll Theodore by Prema 2:11.794 1.320 13
11 Santino Ferrucci Mucke Motorport 2:11.965 1.491 13
12 Mikkel Jensen Mucke Motorport 2:12.026 1.552 10
13 Alexander Sims Double R Racing 2:12.036 1.562 13
14 Jake Dennis Theodore by Prema 2:12.053 1.579 12
15 Alexander Albon Signature 2:12.054 1.580 12
16 Yuhi Sekiguchi B-Max 2:12.197 1.723 12
17 Ryan Tveter West-Tec 2:12.474 2.000 12
18 Yu Kanamaru Carlin 2:12.723 2.249 13
19 Mitsunori Takaboshi B-Max 2:12.836 2.362 12
20 Chang Wing Chung Fortec 2:12.879 2.405 13
21 Hongwei Cao Fortec 2:12.969 2.495 13
22 Kenta Yamashita TOM?s 2:13.027 2.553 14
23 Nick Cassidy TOM?s 2:13.162 2.688 12
24 Gustavo Menezes Carlin 2:13.369 2.895 8
25 Dorian Boccolacci Signature 2:13.683 3.209 8
26 Matthew Solomon Double R Racing 2:13.736 3.262 10
27 Li Zhi Cong Jo Zeller Racing 2:14.525 4.051 13
28 Callum Ilott Carlin No time 1