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DATE News (chronologically)
11/23/11
gp3
Daniel Abt sets the pace in Valencia
Lotus ART’s Daniel Abt dominates Day 1 of post season testing at Circuit de la Comunitat Valenciana Ricardo Tormo

The second post season GP3 Series test kicked off today in Valencia, and once again there were a lot of fresh faces in the paddock. The new batch of drivers hoping to impress teams and grab a coveted 2012 race seat included Japanese F3 champion Yuhi Sekiguchi and Formula Arbath vice-champion Patric Niederhauser. And along with the newcomers some more familiar names returned to the GP3 field including American Conor Daly at Carlin.

Overnight rain meant the teams had to contend with cold and damp conditions in Valencia this morning. Once the session was underway the young drivers hit the track on wet weather Pirelli P Zero tyres to complete installation laps and get to grips with the tricky conditions. Maxim Zimin was first to top the time sheets for MW Arden during a stop/start first half of the session due to a number of red flags.

As the drivers got to grips with their new machines and the times started to drop it was Lotus ART’s rookie Daniel Abt who was the first driver to break the 1:40 barrier. Patric Niederhauser, Will Stevens, Robert Visoiu, Tom Blomqvist and Will Buller also took their turns at the top of the time sheet until GP3 regular Matias Laine moved ahead – the Marussia Manor Racing driver was one of the first to switch to slick tyres. As the session drew to a close sophomore drivers Marlon Stockinger and Daly swapped fastest times, but in the end it was rookie Abt who took the honors. Niederhauser grabbed P2 ahead of Victor Guerin, Daly, Laine and Stockinger.

By the start of the afternoon conditions were much improved and it was Laine who set the pace for the majority of the session. The young Finn went quickest early on, before being briefly knocked off the top spot by rookies Abt and Blomqvist. By midway through the session Laine was firmly back in control and his time went unbeaten until Abt moved back into P1 with just twenty minutes remaining on the clock. With the rest of the field unable to match his pace, the German held onto the spot for the remainder of the session ahead of Michael Heche for Jenzer Motorsport, Laine, Tio Ellinas, Will Stevens, Tamas Pal Kiss, Yuhi Sekiguchi, Niederhauser, Blomqvist and Daly rounding out the top ten.

Testing will resume tomorrow at 09:00 am local time.

Morning times:

Pos Car # Driver Team Nat Best Lap Laps Gap
1 1 ABT,Daniel Lotus ART GER 01:27.505 32 0.000
2 8 NIEDERHAUSER,Patric Jenzer Motorsport SUI 01:28.141 39 0.636
3 2 GUERIN,Victor Lotus ART BRA 01:28.143 32 0.638
4 14 DALY,Conor Carlin USA 01:28.186 33 0.681
5 12 LAINE,Matias Marussia Manor FIN 01:28.237 23 0.732
6 3 STOCKINGER,Marlon Lotus ART PHI 01:28.321 36 0.816
7 10 ELLINAS,Tio Marussia Manor GBR 01:28.443 27 0.938
8 26 STEVENS,Will MW Arden GBR 01:28.566 37 1.061
9 28 ZIMIN,Maxim MW Arden RUS 01:28.596 35 1.091
10 4 BLOMQVIST,Tom Status G.P. GBR 01:28.609 37 1.104
11 16 BULLER,Will Carlin GBR 01:28.771 40 1.266
12 22 PAL KISS,Tamas Atech CRS GP HUN 01:28.870 13 1.365
13 31 SEKIGUCHI,Yuhi RSC Mücke MS JPN 01:29.399 21 1.894
14 7 VISOIU,Robert Jenzer Motorsport ROM 01:29.651 33 2.146
15 27 GAMBERINI,Fabio MW Arden BRA 01:29.743 36 2.238
16 6 REGALIA,Facu Status G.P. ARG 01:29.943 37 2.438
17 5 SAKURAI,Kotaro Status G.P. JPN 01:30.187 37 2.682
18 19 CAMPLESE,Lorenzo Tech1 Racing ITA 01:30.368 30 2.863
19 29 WEHRLEIN,Pascal RSC Mücke MS GER 01:30.442 24 2.937
20 25 CERRUTI,Michela Addax Team ITA 01:31.083 33 3.578
21 11 SURANOVICH,Dmitry Marussia Manor RUS 01:31.181 36 3.676
22 20 RINGEL,Ethan Atech CRS GP USA 01:31.510 24 4.005
23 17 TOLEDANO,Picho Tech1 Racing MEX 01:32.436 33 4.931
24 23 GRIGORENKO,Yuri Addax Team RUS 01:32.837 44 5.332
25 9 HECHE,Michael Jenzer Motorsport SUI 01:43.173 10 15.668


Afternoon times:

Pos Car # Driver Team Nat Best Lap Laps Gap
1 1 ABT,Daniel Lotus ART GER 01:26.935 29 0.000
2 9 HECHE,Michael Jenzer Motorsport SUI 01:27.049 36 0.114
3 12 LAINE,Matias Marussia Manor FIN 01:27.122 25 0.187
4 10 ELLINAS,Tio Marussia Manor GBR 01:27.140 32 0.205
5 26 STEVENS,Will MW Arden GBR 01:27.270 34 0.335
6 22 PAL KISS,Tamas Atech CRS GP HUN 01:27.279 25 0.344
7 31 SEKIGUCHI,Yuhi RSC Mücke MS JPN 01:27.411 20 0.476
8 8 NIEDERHAUSER,Patric Jenzer Motorsport SUI 01:27.470 37 0.535
9 4 BLOMQVIST,Tom Status G.P. GBR 01:27.476 33 0.541
10 14 DALY,Conor Carlin USA 01:27.518 40 0.583
11 28 ZIMIN,Maxim MW Arden RUS 01:27.770 34 0.835
12 27 GAMBERINI,Fabio MW Arden BRA 01:27.807 26 0.872
13 3 STOCKINGER,Marlon Lotus ART PHI 01:27.822 23 0.887
14 2 GUERIN,Victor Lotus ART BRA 01:27.927 28 0.992
15 19 CAMPLESE,Lorenzo Tech1 Racing ITA 01:28.062 33 1.127
16 7 VISOIU,Robert Jenzer Motorsport ROM 01:28.129 24 1.194
17 16 BULLER,Will Carlin GBR 01:28.238 29 1.303
18 6 REGALIA,Facu Status G.P. ARG 01:28.262 39 1.327
19 11 SURANOVICH,Dmitry Marussia Manor RUS 01:28.497 43 1.562
20 5 SAKURAI,Kotaro Status G.P. JPN 01:28.836 22 1.901
21 29 WEHRLEIN,Pascal RSC Mücke MS GER 01:28.892 28 1.957
22 20 RINGEL,Ethan Atech CRS GP USA 01:29.203 37 2.268
23 23 GRIGORENKO,Yuri Addax Team RUS 01:29.370 48 2.435
24 25 CERRUTI,Michela Addax Team ITA 01:30.213 47 3.278
25 17 TOLEDANO,Picho Tech1 Racing MEX 01:30.690 37 3.755
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