Home Featured Hadjar and title rival Aron set the pace in F2 practice at Red Bull Ring

Hadjar and title rival Aron set the pace in F2 practice at Red Bull Ring

by Ida Wood

Photo: Red Bull Content Pool

Campos Racing’s Isack Hadjar set the pace in Formula 2 free practice at the Red Bull Ring.

Prema’s Ollie Bearman was fastest at first, posting a 1m17.011s to lead MP Motorsport’s Dennis Hauger by 0.076 seconds. Virtuosi Racing’s Gabriel Bortoleto bettered Bearman by 0.004s, then there was a big jump in pace as Hitech GP’s championship leader Paul Aron set a 1m16.680s.

Aron’s rivals were then denied the chance to beat him as AIX Racing’s Taylor Barnard stopped on the pit straight and red flags waved. Once his car was out of the way the session restarted with 24 minutes left on the clock, and with Aron, DAMS’ Jak Crawford and ART Grand Prix’s Victor Martins the only drivers to have lapped sub-1m17s.

Red Bull junior Hadjar set a 1m16.818s in the session’s second half to go third fastest, then with 18 minutes to go he improved to 1m16.624s to take top spot while Crawford found 0.049s and Martins made a gain of 0.133s but neither gained a position on the timesheet by doing so.

Hadjar lowered the pace further to 1m16.441s as the session entered its final third, with few other drivers improving and several heading to the pits to change tyres. Trident’s Richard Verschoor was briefly in ninth place before Van Amersfoort Racing’s Enzo Fittipaldi and Hauger went seventh and fourth fastest respectively with 12-and-a-half minutes to go.

The track was busy thereon, although Hadjar soon returned to the pits, and with three minutes to go Crawford, Bearman and Trident’s Roman Stanek joined him in the pitlane.

In the final minute Hadjar, Crawford and Bearman headed back out, with Stanek doing so too just before the chequered flag, which proved to be a redundant action since they could not get in a flying lap and those who had remained on track had been unable to improve their pace so the order had gone unchanged.

While half a second covered the top six, there was 0.938s covering the top 19 and many drivers set their fastest laps early on in practice.

Free practice results
Pos Driver Team Time Gap Laps
1 Isack Hadjar Campos Racing 1m16.441s 19
2 Paul Aron Hitech GP 1m16.680s +0.239s 24
3 Jak Crawford DAMS 1m16.713s +0.272s 23
4 Dennis Hauger MP Motorsport 1m16.719s +0.278s 20
5 Victor Martins ART Grand Prix 1m16.753s +0.312s 23
6 Gabriel Bortoleto Virtuosi Racing 1m16.887s +0.446s 24
7 Enzo Fittipaldi Van Amersfoort Racing 1m16.972s +0.531s 23
8 Joshua Duerksen AIX Racing 1m16.973s +0.532s 21
9 Ollie Bearman Prema 1m17.011s +0.570s 23
10 Roman Stanek Trident 1m17.056s +0.615s 22
11 Richard Verschoor Trident 1m17.057s +0.616s 21
12 Pepe Marti Campos Racing 1m17.060s +0.619s 24
13 Zane Maloney Rodin Motorsport 1m17.062s +0.621s 24
14 Zak O’Sullivan ART Grand Prix 1m17.065s +0.624s 23
15 Amaury Cordeel Hitech GP 1m17.083s +0.642s 23
16 Franco Colapinto MP Motorsport 1m17.088s +0.647s 23
17 Andrea Kimi Antonelli Prema 1m17.180s +0.739s 22
18 Juan Manuel Correa DAMS 1m17.216s +0.775s 22
19 Taylor Barnard AIX Racing 1m17.379s +0.938s 19
20 Ritomo Miyata Rodin Motorsport 1m17.452s +1.011s 27
21 Rafael Villagomez Van Amersfoort Racing 1m17.492s +1.051s 24
22 Kush Maini Virtuosi Racing 1m17.525s +1.084s 19