Home News Nato takes pole in wet Sunday qualifying, Magnussen to the back

Nato takes pole in wet Sunday qualifying, Magnussen to the back

by Peter Allen

Photo: Renault Sport/DPPI

Norman Nato claimed his maiden pole position in the Formula Renault 3.5 Series in a wet Sunday qualifying session at Motorland Aragon, while DAMS team-mate Kevin Magnussen will start from the back after bringing out a red flag having dominated the weekend up to this point.

In a session full of red flags, Nato managed to set a time of 2m12.303s that nobody else could better.

“It was the way I started that made all the difference,” he said. “My aim was to stay on the track and make as few errors as possible, which was very hard to do. I?m delighted with my first pole and I?d like to thank the whole team.”

Nato had knocked long-time rival Stoffel Vandoorne off top spot, and the Belgian was shuffled down to fifth place by the chequered flag. Carlos Huertas will start alongside Nato on the front row, with the second row shared by Sergey Sirotkin and Arthur Pic.

Will Stevens will start sixth after finishing Saturday’s race in second place, with the Draco pairing of Nico Muller and Andre Negrao set to fill the fourth row of the grid. Antonio Felix da Costa managed ninth place ahead of Matias Laine.

Magnussen suffered from a fuel pressure problem that caused him to stop in the gravel. He had his best time deleted for bringing out the red flags and therefore will start 25th.

Sunday’s action has been shortened after Renault engineers discovered a potential reliability issue in their engines after the first race. The race will therefore only last for 29 minutes + 1 lap, with no mandatory pitstop.