Coletti sets pace as GP2 test ends


Less than two weeks before the 2013 GP2 Series season kicks off in Malaysia, Stefano Coletti confirmed his good form today: the Monegasque driver topped a dry testing day in Barcelona in the morning session with a lap time of 1:29.055. Felipe Nasr was fastest in the afternoon for Carlin.

A clear blue sky welcomed the GP2 drivers at the Circuit de Catalunya this morning for the final day of pre-season testing. As the pitlane opened, the track was still damp though pushing the majority of drivers to opt for wet weather tires for the first half of the session. Stéphane Richelmi was the early pace setter, but his teammate Marcus Ericsson took control of the timesheets after one hour done and dusted in the session.

At the halfway mark and on a drying track, Riccardo Agostini was the first driver to test the hard compounds and to significantly improve on Ericsson’s best lap time. The rest of the field also switched to slicks and it was again Ericsson on soft tires who set the best lap time in a 1:29.606 until a red flag was waved when Rene Binder spun and stopped at Turn 5. At the restart, most drivers opted for the Soft Pirelli compounds and Coletti found extra pace to set the best lap time of the session with a 1:29.055, one tenth clear from Ericsson. Richelmi, Jolyon Palmer, Sergio Canamasas, James Calado, and rookies Kevin Giovesi, Mitch Evans, Daniel Abt and Adrian Quaife-Hobbs rounded up the top ten.

The afternoon session opened one hour later on a dry track. Conor Daly replaced Riccardo Agostini at Hilmer Motorsport. Fabio Leimer set the early pace, but Coletti (on the hard compound) edged him out of the top spot. The Rapax driver remained in control of the timesheets until mid-session when Nasr on soft compounds set the fastest second and third sectors to claim top spot a shy 0.09s quicker than Coletti. In the closing stages, the Monegasque driver reduced the gap slightly to end three hundredths slower than Nasr. Taking advantage of a dry track after two days of wet weather, the drivers focused mainly on race simulations and pit-stop practice. Tom Dillmann finished third ahead of Leimer, Quaife-Hobbs, Robin Frijns, Calado, Giovesi, Evans and Daly.

This marked the end of the pre-season testing for GP2 Series. In two weeks time, the paddock will gather in Sepang, Malaysia, for the opening round of the eighth season of the category.

Morning Results

Pos Driver Team Time Laps
1. Stefano Coletti Rapax 1:29.055 30
2. Marcus Ericsson DAMS 1:29.217 35
3. Stéphane Richelmi DAMS 1:29.453 39
4. Jolyon Palmer Carlin 1:29.467 28
5. Sergio Canamasas Caterham Racing 1:29.611 36
6. James Calado ART Grand Prix 1:29.624 33
7. Kevin Giovesi Venezuela GP Lazarus 1:29.812 32
8. Mitch Evans Arden International 1:29.902 34
9. Daniel Abt ART Grand Prix 1:29.994 30
10. Adrian Quaife-Hobbs MP Motorsport 1:30.012 23
11. Daniel De Jong MP Motorsport 1:30.037 26
12. Robin Frijns RUSSIAN TIME 1:30.168 24
13. Fabio Leimer Racing Engineering 1:30.244 22
14. Pal Varhaug Hilmer Motorsport 1:30.300 26
15. Felipe Nasr Carlin 1:30.459 27
16. Rene Binder Venezuela GP Lazarus 1:30.484 19
17. Jake Rosenzweig Barwa Addax Team 1:30.620 16
18. Johnny Cecotto Arden International 1:30.635 31
19. Simon Trummer Rapax 1:30.667 28
20. Riccardo Agostini Hilmer Motorsport 1:30.724 35
21. Rio Haryanto Barwa Addax Team 1:30.813 29
22. Tom Dillmann RUSSIAN TIME 1:30.855 27
23. Rodolfo Gonzalez Trident Racing 1:31.029 13
24. Ma Qing Hua Caterham Racing 1:31.035 32
25. Julian Leal Racing Engineering 1:31.220 14

Afternoon results

Pos Driver Team Time Laps
1. Felipe Nasr Carlin 1:29.381 46
2. Stefano Coletti Rapax 1:29.414 28
3. Tom Dillmann RUSSIAN TIME 1:29.843 37
4. Fabio Leimer Racing Engineering 1:29.862 30
5. Adrian Quaife-Hobbs MP Motorsport 1:29.914 39
6. Robin Frijns RUSSIAN TIME 1:30.053 29
7. James Calado ART Grand Prix 1:30.256 55
8. Kevin Giovesi Venezuela GP Lazarus 1:30.318 33
9. Mitch Evans Arden International 1:30.324 34
10. Conor Daly Hilmer Motorsport 1:30.417 37
11. Daniel De Jong MP Motorsport 1:30.441 29
12. Rene Binder Venezuela GP Lazarus 1:30.454 28
13. Pal Varhaug Hilmer Motorsport 1:30.554 41
14. Julian Leal Racing Engineering 1:30.601 36
15. Stéphane Richelmi DAMS 1:30.643 40
16. Daniel Abt ART Grand Prix 1:30.721 52
17. Sergio Canamasas Caterham racing 1:30.813 54
18. Johnny Cecotto Arden International 1:30.821 33
19. Marcus Ericsson DAMS 1:30.823 40
20. Simon Trummer Rapax 1:30.884 43
21. Jolyon Palmer Carlin 1:30.918 28
22. Rio Haryanto Barwa Addax Team 1:30.997 42
23. Jake Rosenzweig Barwa Addax Team 1:31.271 38
24. Rodolfo Gonzalez Trident Racing 1:31.368 37
25. Ma Qing Hua Caterham Racing 1:31.370 53

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