Euroformula Open graduate Dzhon Simonyan reigned supreme in the two Thursday practice sessions at Teretonga Park.
Simonyan managed to snatch the lead with a last-minute lap on both occasions and ended up as the solitary leader of the first testing day.
In session one, Austrian racer Stefan Riener dominated most of the proceedings, becoming the first driver to dip below the old TRS lap record.
Sam MacLeod, who sat in second with ten minutes to go, then brought out the red flag by going off into the wall. Once the action resumed, Simonyan managed to depose an improving Riener.
Brendon Leitch was an impressive third, ahead of Artem Markelov and Charlie Eastwood. MacLeod ended up in sixth, leading Santino Ferrucci, Matteo Ferrer, Jamie Conroy and Arjun Maini.
Maini then went on to lead much of the second session, but, after another red flag, it was Simonyan again who took the top spot.
Ferrucci claimed third, with Eastwood in fourth. In fifth, Riener was the only driver who couldn’t surpass his earlier laptime, while Conroy followed just 0.001s behind.
Callum Ilott, Brandon Maisano and Lance Stroll broke into the top ten, while Markelov finished tenth.
|1||Dzhon Simonyan||Giles Motorsport||53.402||53.158|
|2||Arjun Maini||M2 Competition||54.016||53.251|
|3||Santino Ferrucci||Giles Motorsport||53.928||53.273|
|4||Stefan Riener||Victory Motor Racing||53.470||53.570|
|5||Charlie Eastwood||M2 Competition||53.838||53.485|
|6||Jamie Conroy||M2 Competition||54.002||53.571|
|7||Callum Ilott||ETEC Motorsport||54.032||53.601|
|8||Brandon Maisano||M2 Competition||54.746||53.621|
|9||Lance Stroll||M2 Competition||54.148||53.650|
|10||Artem Markelov||Giles Motorsport||53.838||53.680|
|11||Brendon Leitch||Victory Motor Racing||53.786||53.717|
|12||Matteo Ferrer||ETEC Motorsport||53.995||53.757|
|13||Sam MacLeod||Giles Motorsport||53.876||53.861|
|14||Damon Leitch||Victory Motor Racing||54.390||53.864|
|15||Thomas Randle||ETEC Motorsport||54.099||53.944|
|16||Alfonso Celis||Giles Motorsport||54.119||53.950|
|17||Ferdinand Habsburg||Victory Motor Racing||54.570||54.001|
|18||Nikita Mazepin||ETEC Motorsport||54.893||54.197|
|19||Mathias Kristensen||M2 Competition||54.616||54.198|
|20||James Munro||Giles Motorsport||54.798||54.211|
Personal best time in bold
Best time of session in italics