Great Britain tops Friday practice as lap times tumble Malaysia - A1 Team Great Britain dominated today's free practice sessions at Sepang circuit in hot and humid conditions, as round three of the 2007/08 A1GP World Cup of Motorsport season kicked off in Malaysia.
23-year-old Oliver Jarvis set the pace, clocking an outstanding lap of 1m49.459s on worn tires around the 5.54km circuit, slashing New Zealand's lap record of 1m53.343s which was set by Jonny Reid at last year's A1GP Sepang event in November 2006.
Jarvis was pleased with his team's start to the weekend but is adamant there is still work to be done and is targeting a strong qualifying performance tomorrow afternoon:
'It was a reasonable day. I would've liked a bit more pace early on in the session with the new tires but I'm very happy with the lap time set at the end - for the age of the tires it was fairly fantastic. But tomorrow's when it really counts and the guys will sit down tonight and analyze the data and hopefully we'll come back even stronger tomorrow.'
Switzerland's Neel Jani, whose driving style suits the smooth and flowing Sepang circuit, finished the day second fastest, just under half a second off the British car. Jani took over from Rahel Frey who was in the Swiss car this morning for the rookie session. Frey set the 13th quickest time and became the fifth female to drive an A1GP car during a race weekend.
France's Loic Duval set the third fastest time of the day while the fourth spot was taken by current championship leader New Zealand's Jonny Reid, closely followed by China and defending champion Germany in fifth and sixth place respectively.
Home nation Malaysia's Alex Yoong had a difficult session this afternoon and was not able to improve on 17th place due to the session being yellow flagged when Pakistan's Adam Khan spun off towards the end of the hour.
Commenting on his performance today and his team's chances this weekend, Yoong said:
'We're losing quite a bit of time through the middle sector - the medium and high speed corners are where we're struggling a bit. I was pleasantly surprised to see how much grip there is out there and they've done a good job resurfacing it - it doesn't feel at all like the track we had last year. We made a couple of changes to the car during the session in the right direction but there's still a lot of work to be done overnight. I don't think today's time is truly representative of where we are and we should be able to improve that quite a bit tomorrow. There are still a couple of things we can improve on the car for sure. I am feeling more confident since Brno but I'm not going to count my chickens before they've hatched and we've got to keep pushing and hopefully keep improving throughout the weekend.'
Official Practice Session 1 - Rookie drivers and developing nations only
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