Home Formula 3FIA F3 Championship Leclerc on top in wet first morning of FIA F3 testing at Jerez

Leclerc on top in wet first morning of FIA F3 testing at Jerez

by Roger Gascoigne

Photo: Formula Motorsport Limited

Arthur Leclerc set the fastest time on the morning of FIA Formula 3 in-season testing at Jerez, topping the session with his final lap.

The Prema driver’s 1m40.202s lap put him over half a second clear of the rest of the field.

On a drying track after early rain, laptimes tumbled in the closing 20 minutes of the morning and Trident’s Roman Stanek moving to the top with a 1m40.731s. That put him second in the end, 0.031s ahead of Van Amersfoort Racing’s Franco Colapinto.

The ART Grand Prix pairing of Gregoire Saucy and Victor Martins were consistently in the top 10, ultimately ending up fourth and fifth ahead of Prema’s Jak Crawford.

Heavy overnight rain and a further shower just as the three-hour session started meant there was limited running in the first hour.

As the track surface began to dry, Hitech GP’s Isack Hadjar set the initial pace. A succession of fastest laps, culminating in a 1m42.047s, put him in the first place before a mistake under braking at turn one brought his session to an end.

The session was briefly red flagged as his car was recovered, and as drivers improved in the final hour he was shuffled down to ninth place.

Oliver Rasmussen made his first appearance for Trident, replacing Jonny Edgar who has stopped racing on health grounds, and went 12th fastest. Another F3 returnee was Federico Malvestiti at Jenzer Motorsport, and he was 25th fastest.

Two drivers did not take part. MP Motorsport’s Alexander Smolyar, whose car adorned a new red livery in contrast to the blue of his team-mates, was yet to arrive to the track, while Carlin’s Brad Benavides skipped the morning as he felt unwell. Both should be out in the afternoon session.

Teams were trying out the new spec steering wheels, which will be used for the rest of the season. Initial reactions were less than favourable due to the extra thickness of the new wheel.

Morning session results
Pos Driver Team Time Gap Laps
1 Arthur Leclerc Prema 1m40.202s 35
2 Roman Stanek Trident 1m40.731s +0.530s 29
3 Franco Colapinto Van Amersfoort Racing 1m40.763s +0.561s 31
4 Gregoire Saucy ART Grand Prix 1m40.805s +0.603s 33
5 Victor Martins ART Grand Prix 1m40.808s +0.606s 36
6 Jak Crawford Prema 1m40.886s +0.684s 33
7 Pepe Marti Campos Racing 1m40.944s +0.742s 32
8 William Alatalo Jenzer Motorsport 1m41.119s +0.917s 36
9 Isack Hadjar Hitech GP 1m41.158s +0.956s 27
10 Zane Maloney Trident 1m41.260s +1.058s 26
11 Zak O’Sullivan Carlin 1m41.373s +1.171s 43
12 Oliver Rasmussen Trident 1m41.380s +1.178s 29
13 Ido Cohen Jenzer Motorsport 1m41.505s +1.303s 31
14 Hunter Yeany Campos Racing 1m41.652s +1.450s 35
15 Ollie Bearman Prema 1m41.729s +1.528s 28
16 Kaylen Frederick Hitech GP 1m41.779s +1.577s 38
17 Caio Collet MP Motorsport 1m41.807s +1.605s 26
18 David Vidales Campos Racing 1m41.841s +1.639s 29
19 Rafael Villagomez Van Amersfoort Racing 1m41.941s +1.739s 33
20 Reece Ushijima Van Amersfoort Racing 1m42.045s +1.844s 32
21 Francesco Pizzi Charouz Racing System 1m42.129s +1.927s 31
22 Kush Maini MP Motorsport 1m42.490s +2.288s 22
23 Juan Manuel Correa ART Grand Prix 1m42.597s +2.395s 25
24 Enzo Trulli Carlin 1m42.736s +2.535s 46
25 Federico Malvestiti Jenzer Motorsport 1m43.073s +2.871s 31
26 Ayrton Simmons Charouz Racing System 1m43.322s +3.120s 31
27 Nazim Azman Hitech GP 1m44.455s +4.253s 26
28 Laszlo Toth Charouz Racing System 1m45.200s +4.998s 32
29 Alexander Smolyar MP Motorsport no time 0
30 Brad Benavides Carlin no time 0