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Verschoor lowers F2 pace at Barcelona on second morning of test

by Ida Wood

Photo: Formula Motorsport Limited

Richard Verschoor was fastest in Formula 2’s three-hour Saturday morning test session at Barcelona, which could be his last appearance in the series with no confirmation of a race return.

As on the first day of the test, MP Motorsport was the first team on track and its driver Verschoor set a 1m29.846s in the opening 10 minutes that was just a few tenths of a second off Friday’s fastest lap.

ART Grand Prix’s Christian Lundgaard, who set that day one pace, then pushed Verschoor off top spot before Hitech GP’s Juri Vips set the new fastest lap of the test with a 1m29.560s.

Lundgaard improved to a 1m29.628s in second place after 19 minutes, by which point most drivers had already returned to the pits after their first runs.

Verschoor was shuffled down to seventh after team-mate Lirim Zendeli went fastest with a 1m29.440s and quick laps came in from DAMS’ Marcus Armstrong and Carlin’s Jehan Daruvala and Dan Ticktum, but his attempt to bring himself back up the order ended halfway around the lap and resulted in the day’s first red flag period.

Campos Racing’s Ralph Boschung set a new 1m29.291s benchmark after the restart, with Vips coming in 0.015 seconds behind before posting a 1m29.062s to go back ahead.

Prema then demonstrated its single-lap pace, with Oscar Piastri bettering Vips by 0.003s and his team-mate Robert Shwartzman going third fastest before red flags were waved again when DAMS’ Roy Nissany spun at turn 3.

While many teams opted to extend their stays in the pits following the restart, Boschung was quick to get back on an increasingly grippy track to become the first driver to lap sub-1m29s.

Daruvala and then Virtuosi Racing’s Felipe Drugovich lowered the pace minutes later, with the latter on top at the halfway mark on a 1m28.544s.

Verschoor went out on an empty track to lower the pace to 1m28.280s, and Boschung used the same strategy to go second.

There was otherwise very little action in the final 90 minutes, although DAMS sent Armstrong and Nissany back out and they went fourth and sixth, while Trident’s test-only driver Bent Viscaal made several improvements that eventually brought him up to fifth place, and the top 18 covered by less than a second.

Test results

Pos Driver Team Time Gap Laps
1 Richard Verschoor MP Motorsport 1m28.280s 51
2 Ralph Boschung Campos Racing 1m28.474s +0.194s 32
3 Felipe Drugovich Virtuosi 1m28.544s +0.264s 45
4 Marcus Armstrong DAMS 1m28.670s +0.390s 35
5 Bent Viscaal Trident 1m28.675s +0.395s 39
6 Roy Nissany DAMS 1m28.698s +0.418s 36
7 Theo Pourchaire ART Grand Prix 1m28.766s +0.486s 48
8 Lirim Zendeli MP Motorsport 1m28.801s +0.521s 41
9 Christian Lundgaard ART Grand Prix 1m28.805s +0.525s 49
10 Liam Lawson Hitech GP 1m28.810s +0.530s 40
11 Juri Vips Hitech GP 1m28.872s +0.592s 53
12 Guanyu Zhou Virtuosi 1m28.880s +0.600s 50
13 Jehan Daruvala Carlin 1m28.884s +0.604s 32
14 Gianluca Petecof Campos Racing 1m28.929s +0.649s 37
15 Dan Ticktum Carlin 1m29.012s +0.732s 34
16 Oscar Piastri Prema 1m29.059s +0.779s 25
17 Marino Sato Trident 1m29.175s +0.895s 32
18 Robert Shwartzman Prema 1m29.260s +0.980s 24
19 Guilherme Samaia Charouz Racing System 1m30.125s +1.845s 49
20 David Beckmann Charouz Racing System 1m30.194s +1.914s 44
21 Matteo Nannini HWA Racelab 1m30.855s +2.575s 27
22 Alessio Deledda HWA Racelab 1m32.721s +4.441s 26