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Calado powers to GP2 pole in Valencia
James Calado has claimed his second pole position of the season with a scorching lap in hot conditions to take the top spot by just 0.007 seconds from Felipe Nasr and Esteban Gutierrez this afternoon in Valencia.

The Briton's best time of 1:47.342 was set at the halfway point of the session on the soft compound Pirelli tires, on which most of the field started, and everyone’s tires was affected when Giancarlo Serenelli spun at the bridge on the first flying lap, grinding to a halt in the middle of the track and prompting a red flag period as his rivals made their way back to the pits, with most unable to complete a lap.

If there were any questions about the super softs having any life left in them, they were soon answered when Davide Valsecchi set the fastest lap on the red-rimmed tires with which he began the session, but over the next 2 minutes Gutierrez, then Nasr, then Calado pushed the Italian down the order, with the Englishman going five thousandths faster again a few minutes later before returning for fresh boots.

Max Chilton was the first man back on track, wearing super softs for good measure, and though he improved to P6 with a clear track most of his rivals were not so lucky: Calado even managed a spin late in the session as he looked for more time, but managed to stay off the walls and slunk back to the pits as the clock wound down to zero.

Just behind the top three were Valsecchi and Giedo van der Garde (two tenths splitting the top five drivers), ahead of Chilton, Fabio Leimer (who also improved on his second set), Jolyon Palmer, this morning's quickest man Marcus Ericsson and Rio Haryanto, all well within a second of pole. With temperatures set to raise yet further tomorrow, the feature race promises scorching battles up and down the grid.

Valencia – Qualifying Session


Driver Team Laptime Laps
1. James Calado Lotus GP 1:47.342 12
2. Felipe Nasr DAMS 1:47.349 12
3. Esteban Gutierrez Lotus GP 1:47.444 12
4. Davide Valsecchi DAMS 1:47.458 13
5. Giedo van der Garde Caterham Racing 1:47.543 12
6. Max Chilton Carlin 1:47.674 13
7. Fabio Leimer Racing Engineering 1:47.779 13
8. Jolyon Palmer iSport International 1:47.801 13
9. Marcus Ericsson iSport International 1:47.972 13
10. Rio Haryanto Carlin 1:47.996 13
11. Luiz Razia Arden International 1:48.155 11
12. Tom Dillmann Rapax 1:48.176 12
13. Stefano Coletti Scuderia Coloni 1:48.222 10
14. Stéphane Richelmi Trident Racing 1:48.288 13
15. Johnny Cecotto Barwa Addax Team 1:48.390 9
16. Nathanael Berthon Racing Engineering 1:48.518 8
17. Simon Trummer Arden International 1:48.565 12
18. Fabio Onidi Scuderia Coloni 1:48.578 13
19 Josef Kral Barwa Addax Team 1:48.626 13
20. Julian Leal Trident Racing 1:48.641 13
21. Fabrizio Crestani Venezuela GP Lazarus 1:48.846 13
22. Rodolfo Gonzalez Caterham Racing 1:48.936 13
23. Nigel Melker Ocean Racing Technology 1:49.021 13
24. Victor Guerin Ocean Racing Technology 1:49.335 12
25. Daniel De Jong Rapax 1:49.900 12
26. Giancarlo Serenelli Venezuela GP Lazarus -- 2

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