Home News Maisano and MacLeod claim poles for Toyota Racing Series opener

Maisano and MacLeod claim poles for Toyota Racing Series opener

by Peter Allen
Sam MacLeod

Photo: Toyota Racing NZ

Likely European F3 campaigners Brandon Maisano and Sam MacLeod shared the spoils in qualifying for the opening round of the Toyota Racing Series at Ruapuna.

Maisano triumphed in a three-way fight for top spot in the first of the two 15-minute sessions, defeating his companion Lance Stroll and GP2 racer Artem Markelov.

Maisano overturned a 0.016-second deficit to Markelov with a minute left of the opening bout to claim pole for Saturday afternoon’s race.

Markelov was stung with a five-place grid penalty for abusing track limits, promoting Stroll onto the front row alongside his Prema and M2 Competition team-mate. The 16-year-old Canadian had only been six hundredths off the pace.

Best of the rest was MacLeod in fourth. He, Stefan Riener, Thomas Randle and Damon Leitch are all set to gain a place from Markelov’s penalty.

Testing frontrunner Arjun Maini had to make do with eighth ahead of his fellow BRDC F4 graduate, with John Simonyan completing the top ten.

In the second session, Stroll led the times at first but MacLeod stole top spot away from him and ifnished up with a 0.061s advantage.

Markelov got up to third with his final effort ahead of Austrian FR2.0 regular Riener. Maisano was a more muted fifth, followed by Eastwood and Randle. Local ace James Munro was eighth after coming 13th in the opening session, while Maini and Santino Ferrucci claimed places on the fifth row.

Qualifying results
Race 1 Race 3
Pos. Driver Team Time Pos. Driver Team Time
1 Brandon Maisano M2 Competition 1:17.196 1 Sam MacLeod Giles Motorsport 1:16.689
2 Lance Stroll M2 Competition 1:17.256 2 Lance Stroll M2 Competition 1:16.750
3 Sam MacLeod Giles Motorsport 1:17.406 3 Artem Markelov Giles Motorsport 1:16.925
4 Stefan Riener Victory Motor Racing 1:17.453 4 Stefan Riener Victory Motor Racing 1:16.930
5 Thomas Randle ETEC Motorsport 1:17.510 5 Brandon Maisano M2 Competition 1:16.999
6 Damon Leitch Victory Motor Racing 1:17.524 6 Charlie Eastwood M2 Competition 1:17.026
7 Artem Markelov* Giles Motorsport 1:17.212 7 Thomas Randle ETEC Motorsport 1:17.029
8 Arjun Maini M2 Competition 1:17.527 8 James Munro Giles Motorsport 1:17.068
9 Charlie Eastwood M2 Competition 1:17.600 9 Arjun Maini M2 Competition 1:17.079
10 Dzhon Simonyan Giles Motorsport 1:17.650 10 Santino Ferrucci Giles Motorsport 1:17.220
11 Ferdinand Habsburg Victory Motor Racing 1:17.737 11 Damon Leitch Victory Motor Racing 1:17.379
12 Santino Ferrucci Giles Motorsport 1:17.743 12 Callum Ilott ETEC Motorsport 1:17.402
13 James Munro Giles Motorsport 1:17.832 13 Dzhon Simonyan Giles Motorsport 1:17.510
14 Callum Ilott ETEC Motorsport 1:17.958 14 Ferdinand Habsburg Victory Motor Racing 1:17.575
15 Alfonso Celis Giles Motorsport 1:18.076 15 Brendon Leitch Victory Motor Racing 1:17.663
16 Nikita Mazepin ETEC Motorsport 1:18.088 16 Alfonso Celis Giles Motorsport 1:17.800
17 Mathias Kristensen M2 Competition 1:18.131 17 Jamie Conroy M2 Competition 1:17.894
18 Jamie Conroy M2 Competition 1:18.270 18 Mathias Kristensen M2 Competition 1:17.930
19 Brendon Leitch Victory Motor Racing 1:18.518 19 Nikita Mazepin ETEC Motorsport 1:18.376
20 Matteo Ferrer ETEC Motorsport 1:18.795 20 Matteo Ferrer ETEC Motorsport 1:18.525

* – 5-place grid penalty