Home Formula 3Asian F3 Jake Hughes tops first qualifying sessions for new Asian F3 championship

Jake Hughes tops first qualifying sessions for new Asian F3 championship

by Elliot Wood

GP3 contender Jake Hughes took the first two pole positions of the new Formula 3?Asian Championship at Sepang.

The Hitech GP driver was fastest in both of the 15 minute qualifying sessions, despite missing free practice due to a stomach bug.

Hughes set a 2m03.800s lap in the first session, and bettered that with a 2m03.265s in the second. The two sessions set the grid for the first and third races.

Reigning Asian Formula Renault and Chinese Formula 4 champion Charles Leong made it a Hitech front row lockout for the first race, and was third fastest behind Absolute Racing’s Akash Nandy in the second session. Nandy will line up fourth for the first race.

South African Raoul Hyman, the third of the Hitech drivers, was third and fourth fastest in the two sessions.

“I’m really happy to get double pole, considering I didn?t do practice because I
couldn?t get out of bed this morning [with a stomach bug],” said double poleman Hughes.

“I was in the medical centre when the track went green! I rushed into the car, did three laps and we got pole.

“The second session was a bit more civilised. I?m really happy to get pole. It?s not my first time in Malaysia but it is my first time in an Asian championship.

“I really enjoyed it but I?m not used to this humidity ? I?m from Birmingham!”

Other drivers who impressed included BlackArts Racing?s Louis Prette, who qualified fifth and seventh, and Tomoki Takahashi, who went seventh and sixth fastest for Super License.

Chase Owen, driving for his self-titled team, qualified sixth and eighth.

The slowest driver in both sessions was Japanese F3 regular ‘Dragon’, who was more than four seconds off the pace in his B-MAX Racing Team car.

Results round-up

Qualifying 1
1 Jake Hughes Hitech GP 2m03.800s
2 Charles Leong Hitech GP +0.299s
3 Raoul Hyman Hitech GP +0.469s
4 Akash Nandy Absolute Racing +0.566s
5 Louis Prette BlackArts Racing +0.639s
6 Chase Owen Chase Owen Racing +0.708s
7 Tomoki Takahashi Super License +0.747s
8 Jaden Conwright Absolute Racing +0.873s
9 James Yu Chase Owen Racing +1.705s
10 Presley Martono BlackArts Racing +1.782s

Qualifying 2
1 Hughes 2m03.265s
2 Nandy +0.472s
3 Leong +0.511s
4 Hyman +0.743s
5 Conwright +0.854s
6 Takahashi +0.858s
7 Prette +1.109s
8 Owen +1.264s
9 Yu +1.544s
10 Martono +1.749s