Marcus Armstrong sets the pace at Le Castellet

Marcus Armstrong
Marcus Armstrong

Marcus Armstrong has set the fastest laptime on Day 1 of the FIA Formula 3 pre-season testing today at Le Castellet, France. The Ferrari Academy driver was able to clock in a time of a 1:49.243 in the afternoon session to top the day overall ahead of Lirim Zendeli and Robert Shwartzman.

The sun greeted the teams when the pitlane opened. Trident’s trio of Niko Kari, Pedro Piquet and Devlin DeFrancesco quickly hit the track to set their customary installation laps. The rest of the pack soon followed and within the first thirty minutes all thirty cars had had their first taste of the Circuit Paul Ricard.

On the one hour mark, Raoul Hyman set the early pace, but Christian Lundgaard went top with a laptime half a second quicker than Juri Vips in P2. The ART driver found some extra pace to break the 1m51s barrier just before a red flag halted the proceedings for a quick technical assessment.

The pitlane went green again twenty minutes later and at shortly after that Leonardo Pulcini clocked in a laptime of 1:50.328 to go top, but Lundgaard was able to improve further by one tenth to reclaim P1. With thirty minutes left in the session, Richard Verschoor and DeFrancesco brought out a second red flag after the MP driver and the Trident man stopped simultaneously at turns 1 and 7 respectively.

Christian Lundgaard
Christian Lundgaard

In the closing stages, both Lundgaard and Pulcini were able to dip under 1m50s with the Dane going quickest in a 1:49.685. Robert Shwartzman claimed P3 in the nick of time edging Niko Kari. At the checkered flag, Vips, Maximilian Fewtrell, Alex Peroni, Piquet, Verschoor and Logan Sargeant completed the top 10.

After a two-hour break, the proceedings resumed with Andreas Estner (who is testing for Jenzer Motorsport this week) taking to the track first. Jehan Daruvala set the early pace in a 1:51.510 before a brief red flag period courtesy of Sargeant who stopped at the exit of Turn 7.

Halfway through the session, Yuki Tsunoda went top in a 1:50.262 ahead of Sebastian Fernandez and Liam Lawson. Armstrong dipped under 1m50s just before another red flag period after Vips stopped at Turn 7. In the dying stages, Zendeli moved up to P2 whilst Shwartzman found some extra pace to feature in third place at the checkered flag. Pulcini, Verschoor, Simo Laaksonen, Fernandez, Lundgaard, Beckmann and Daruvala rounded up the top 10.

Day 2 will start tomorrow at 9am local time.

FIA Formula 3 Le Castellet Test – Day 1 Morning Session

Pos

Driver

Team

Time

Laps

1

Christian Lundgaard

ART Grand Prix

1:49.685

30

2

Leonardo Pulcini

Hitech Grand Prix

1:49.772

30

3

Robert Shwartzman

PREMA Racing

1:49.838

25

4

Niko Kari

Trident

1:50.078

25

5

Juri Vips

Hitech Grand Prix

1:50.202

36

6

Maximilian Fewtrell

ART Grand Prix

1:50.498

32

7

Alex Peroni

Campos Racing

1:50.545

23

8

Pedro Piquet

Trident

1:50.597

25

9

Richard Verschoor

MP Motorsport

1:50.606

19

10

Logan Sargeant

Carlin Buzz Racing

1:50.762

23

11

Simo Laaksonen

MP Motorsport

1:50.767

25

12

Sebastian Fernandez

Campos Racing

1:50.845

21

13

David Beckmann

ART Grand Prix

1:51.017

21

14

Yuki Tsunoda

Jenzer Motorsport

1:51.326

26

15

Marcus Armstrong

PREMA Racing

1:51.344

20

16

Lirim Zendeli

Sauber Junior Team by Charouz

1:51.434

18

17

Fabio Scherer

Sauber Junior Team by Charouz

1:51.522

25

18

Ye Yifei

Hitech Grand Prix

1:51.776

21

19

Jehan Daruvala

PREMA Racing

1:51.846

18

20

Bent Viscaal

HWA RACELAB

1:51.944

11

21

Teppei Natori

Carlin Buzz Racing

1:51.945

25

22

Devlin DeFrancesco

Trident

1:52.026

21

23

Alessio Deledda

Campos Racing

1:52.198

22

24

Felipe Drugovich

Carlin Buzz Racing

1:52.384

18

25

Raoul Hyman

Sauber Junior Team by Charouz

1:52.459

18

26

Liam Lawson

MP Motorsport

1:52.759

22

27

Andreas Estner

Jenzer Motorsport

1:52.792

19

28

Artem Petrov

Jenzer Motorsport

1:53.804

13

29

Keyvan Andres

HWA RACELAB

1:54.357

15

30

Jake Hughes

HWA RACELAB

2:21.077

5

FIA Formula 3 Le Castellet Test – Day 1 Afternoon Session

Pos

Driver

Team

Time

Laps

1

Marcus Armstrong

PREMA Racing

1:49.243

30

2

Lirim Zendeli

Sauber Junior Team by Charouz

1:49.578

30

3

Robert Shwartzman

PREMA Racing

1:49.634

25

4

Leonardo Pulcini

Hitech Grand Prix

1:49.656

25

5

Richard Verschoor

MP Motorsport

1:49.740

36

6

Simo Laaksonen

MP Motorsport

1:49.770

32

7

Sebastian Fernandez

Campos Racing

1:49.793

23

8

Christian Lundgaard

ART Grand Prix

1:49.817

25

9

David Beckmann

ART Grand Prix

1:49.893

19

10

Jehan Daruvala

PREMA Racing

1:49.956

23

11

Alexander Peroni

Campos Racing

1:50.014

25

12

Yuki Tsunoda

Jenzer Motorsport

1:50.117

21

13

Logan Sargeant

Carlin Buzz Racing

1:50181

21

14

Liam Lawson

MP Motorsport

1:50.317

26

15

Andreas Estner

Jenzer Motorsport

1:50.335

20

16

Raoul Hyman

Sauber Junior Team by Charouz

1:50.493

18

17

Niko Kari

Trident

1:50.528

25

18

Pedro Piquet

Trident

1:50.613

21

19

Felipe Drugovich

Carlin Buzz Racing

1:50.619

18

20

Maximilian Fewtrell

ART Grand Prix

1:50.715

11

21

Fabio Scherer

Sauber Junior Team by Charouz

1:50.858

25

22

Devlin DeFrancesco

Trident

1:50.877

21

23

Artem Petrov

Jenzer Motorsport

1:50.906

22

24

Ye Yifei

Hitech Grand Prix

1:50.927

18

25

Teppei Natori

Carlin Buzz Racing

1:51.045

18

26

Bent Viscaal

HWA RACELAB

1:51.244

22

27

Alessio Deledda

Campos Racing

1:51.660

19

28

Keyvan Andres

HWA RACELAB

1:51.741

13

29

Juri Vips

Hitech Grand Prix

1:53.097

15

30

Jake Hughes

HWA RACELAB

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