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DATE News (chronologically)
03/03/11
gp3
Alexander Sims tops day one of GP3 Series 2011 pre-season testing
Status Grand Prix’s rookie Alexander Sims was the fastest man out on track today, after setting the best time of 1:21.827 during the morning session at Circuit Paul Ricard on a rain-affected first day.

After nearly five months the GP3 Series teams were back on track today for the first of three pre-season tests. The teams were greeted with a wet track and low temperatures at Circuit Paul Ricard giving many of the thirty young drivers their first taste of Pirelli’s wet weather tires.

It was a slow start to the morning session. MW Arden was the first team to hit the 3D configuration track, with newcomer Lewis Williamson setting the initial benchmark time for the rest of the field. The British driver was eventually toppled from the top of the time sheets by Status Grand Prix’s Alexander Sims after the first hour was complete. The track slowly started to dry in the latter part of the session and the times began to drop – Williamson, Sims, rookies Valtteri Bottas and Gabby Chaves, Miki Monras, Ivan Lukashevich, Simon Trummer and Vittorio Ghirelli all took their turns at the top before a red flag halted proceedings.

When the lights changed to green the drivers had just five minutes left on the clock for one final shootout. With some of the field out on slicks, and the track still drying it was impossible to predict who would finish the session on top. It looked like Chaves would be the driver to triumph, but in the dying seconds new Status signees Sims and Felix Da Costa took the honors with Sims setting the quickest lap time of 1:21.827.

When the lights turned green in the afternoon session the cars were quick to take to the track whilst the rain held off, but just a few minutes in and the heavens opened. All the cars out on track ducked back into the pits leaving rookie James Calado at the top of the time sheet for Lotus ART with a lap time of 1:24.627. For the remainder of the session conditions struggled to improve with the downpour only easing for the final thirty minutes. It was a tough afternoon for the drivers, and there were a number of red flags caused by casualties of the rain. Marussia Manor Racing’s Rio Haryanto managed to set the quickest wet time of the day with a lap time of 1:35.164, but Calado’s time went unbeaten, and the field were left eager to start again tomorrow – hopefully under blue skies.

The test will continue tomorrow at 09:00 am local time.

P
DRIVER
TEAM
LAPS
BEST TIME
GAP
1
Alexander Sims
STATUS GRAND PRIX
-
1:21827
0.000
2
Antonio Felix Da Costa
STATUS GRAND PRIX
34
1:21.913
0.086
3
Gabby Chaves
ADDAX TEAM
49
1:22.067
0.240
4
Lewis Williamson
MW ARDEN
50
1:22.221
0.394
5
MON Miki Monras
ADDAX TEAM
52
1:22.375
0.548
6
Tamas Pal Kiss
TECH 1 RACING
34
1:22.488
0.661
7
Adrian Quaife-Hobbs
MANOR RACING
36
1:22.870
1.043
8
Ivan Lukashevich
STATUS GRAND PRIX
41
1:22.931
1.104
9
Tom Dillmann
CARLIN
37
1:23.034
1.207
10
Vittorio Ghirelli
JENZER MOTORSPORT
48
1:23.180
1.353
11
Conor Daly
CARLIN
40
1:23.278
1.451
12
Daniel Morad
ADDAX TEAM
38
1:23.668
1.841
13
Marlon Stockinger
ATECH CRS GP
48
1:23.993
2.166
14
Kataro Sakurai
CARLIN
46
1:24.959
3.132
15
Zoel Amberg
ATECH CRS GP
38
1:25.017
3.190
16
Nick Yelloly
ATECH CRS GP
51
1:26.584
4.757
17
Valtteri Bottas
LOTUS ART
36
1:27.312
5.485
18
James Calado
LOTUS ART
27
1:27.779
5.952
19
Aaro Vainio
TECH 1 RACING
24
1:27.868
6.041
20
Nigel Melker
RSC M…UCKE MOTORSPORT
33
1:28.207
6.380
21
Michael Christensen
RSC M…UCKE MOTORSPORT
37
1:28.299
6.472
22
Simon Trummer
MW ARDEN
36
1:28.363
6.536
23
Rio Haryanto
MANOR RACING
35
1:28.520
6.693
24
Maxim Zimin
JENZER MOTORSPORT
37
1:28.830
7.003
25
Doru Sechelariu
TECH 1 RACING
38
1:29.150
7.323
26
Matias Laine
MANOR RACING
15
1:31.104
9.277
27
Nico Muller
JENZER MOTORSPORT
36
1:31.823
9.996
28
Willi Steindl
RSC MU…CKE MOTORSPORT
34
1:32.335
10.50
29
Pedro Nunes
LOTUS ART
27
1:33.284
11.45
30
Mitch Evans
MW ARDEN
24
1:33.645
11.81
Full afternoon session times:
POS
DRIVER
TEAM
LAPS
BEST TIME
GAP
1
James Calado
LOTUS ART
36
1:24.627
0.000
2
Ivan Lukashevich
STATUS GRAND PRIX
30
1:25.795
1.168
3
Lewis Williamson
MW ARDEN
18
1:25.798
1.171
4
Adrian Quaife-Hobbs
MANOR RACING
33
1:25.966
1.339
5
Tom Dillmann
CARLIN
35
1:26.024
1.397
6
Conor Daly
CARLIN
45
1:26.085
1.458
7
Valtteri Bottas
LOTUS ART
39
1:26.092
1.465
8
Antonio Felix Da Costa
STATUS GRAND PRIX
24
1:26.109
1.482
9
Alexander Sims
STATUS GRAND PRIX
17
1:26.198
1.571
10
Nigel Melker
RSC MÜCKE MOTORSPORT
41
1:26.567
1.940
11
Daniel Morad
ADDAX TEAM
10
1:26.632
2.005
12
Nick Yelloly
ATECH CRS GP
8
1:26.794
2.167
13
Maxim Zimin
JENZER MOTORSPORT
33
1:26.895
2.268
14
Vittorio Ghirelli
JENZER MOTORSPORT
12
1:27.349
2.722
15
Nico Müller
JENZER MOTORSPORT
17
1:27.479
2.852
16
Michael Christensen
RSC MÜCKE MOTORSPORT
37
1:27.679
3.052
17
Marlon Stockinger
ATECH CRS GP
16
1:27.994
3.367
18
Zoel Amberg
ATECH CRS GP
30
1:28.623
3.996
19
Tamas Pal Kiss
TECH 1 RACING
39
1:29.390
4.763
20
Kataro Sakurai
CARLIN
36
1:29.923
5.296
21
Matias Laine
MANOR RACING
34
1:34.554
9.927
22
Rio Haryanto
MANOR RACING
24
1:35.164
10.537
23
Willi Steindl
RSC MÜCKE MOTORSPORT
37
1:35.203
10.576
24
Mitch Evans
MW ARDEN
41
1:37.480
12.853
25
Gabby Chaves
ADDAX TEAM
20
1:38.034
13.407
26
Doru Sechelariu
TECH 1 RACING
34
1:38.483
13.856
27
Aaro Vainio
TECH 1 RACING
42
1:38.545
13.918
28
Pedro Nunes
LOTUS ART
34
1:38.654
14.027
29
Simon Trummer
MW ARDEN
17
1:38.870
14.243
30
Miki Monras
ADDAX TEAM
12
1:39.256
14.629
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