Marco Wittmann secures Macau Formula 3 Grand Prix pole
Another damp, overcast day in Macau
Marco Wittmann has secured pole position for the “SJM” Macau Grand Prix qualification race after delivering the fastest time in a thrilling final qualifying session on Friday.
The German maintained the strong form he showed in the morning’s free practice session, as drivers experienced dry conditions for the first time this weekend, to move to the top of the standings early on.
However, after 11 minutes, Roberto Merhi showed what he was capable of as he moved to the front briefly, before Felipe Nasr then delivered the top time. Wittmann responded with 10 minutes of the session remaining to move back to the top of the timesheets, but he was knocked off the top again by Merhi.
On his final lap of the session though, Wittmann was able to find more time and his best lap of 2m12.790s left him just 0.064 seconds in front of Merhi.
“To do it on the last lap was really amazing,” said Wittmann. “It is a great feeling to finish first in qualifying, but still we have two long races to go. You can overtake here easily on the straight, but I think we have good pace and I am quite confident.”
Although Merhi qualified second, he will be moved down the grid after being handed a seven place penalty for causing an accident with Felix Rosenqvist in first qualifying on Thursday.
Merhi’s penalty means that Antonio da Costa, who qualified third, will start alongside Wittmann on the front row. Valtteri Bottas proved that his late arrival at the event, following his travels from the Formula 1 test in Abu Dhabi, had not slowed him down as he set the fourth quickest time – which will secure him third on the grid.
Nasr dropped to sixth in the standings, behind Alexander Sims, after crashing late in the session.
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