Felix Da Costa flies to maiden pole in Barcelona

Portuguese driver Antonio Felix Da Costa started his 2012 campaign in style by taking pole position at the opening round of the GP3 Series in Spain. The Carlin’s driver best lap of 1:38.642.was faster than Conor Daly by 0.078s at the Circuit de Catalunya.

Qualifying was run in 23 degrees under the strong early morning sunshine with the new class of GP3 Series – full largely of rookies eager to make a positive first impression. MW Arden’s David Fumanelli was the first driver onto the circuit, with the other 25 drivers following hot in pursuit.

Marussia Manor Racing’s Tio Ellinas headed the timesheets early on with Alex Brundle then setting an identical lap time with the drivers setting times in the 1’39s. Mitch Evans (MW Arden) then shot to P1, just 0.077s quicker at the midway point in front of Felix Da Costa, Daniel Abt and Marlon Stockinger.

With the drivers returning to the pits to make their final changes in the closing part of qualifying, the pressure was on to get a good and clear lap to gain the best qualifying position ready for Race 1 this evening. Lotus GP’s Daly took provisional pole with less than 5 minutes remaining until Jenzer Motorsport’s Patric Niederhauser went faster.

But it was to be Carlin Racing’s Felix Da Costa’s day, as he set the quickest time with a few minutes spare to line up on the front of the grid. Joining him on row one is Daly ahead of Aaro Vainio, Evans, Stockinger, Ellinas, Abt, Niederhauser, Matias Laine and Dmitry Suranovich. The top 15 drivers were covered by just one second, showing how fierce the competition is in this Series.

Race 1 will start at 17.20 CET later today.


Pos Driver Team Lap time Laps
1. Antonio Felix Da Costa Carlin Racing 1:38.642 15
2. Conor Daly Lotus GP 1:38.720 12
3. Aaro Vainio Lotus GP 1:38.732 12
4. Mitch Evans MW Arden 1:38.835 14
5. Marlon Stockinger Status Grand Prix 1:38.867 15
6. Tio Ellinas Marussia Manor Racing 1:38.894 15
7. Daniel Abt Lotus GP 1:38.945 11
8. Patric Niederhauser Jenzer Motorsport 1:38.988 13
9. Matias Laine MW Arden 1:39.151 12
10. Dmitry Suranovich Marussia Manor Racing 1:39.164 14
11. David Fumanelli MW Arden 1:39.175 12
12. Tamas Pal Kiss Atech CRS GP 1:39.201 13
13. Alex Brundle Carlin Racing 1:39.228 13
14. William Buller Carlin Racing 1:39.512 13
15. Robert Visoiu Jenzer Motorsport 1:39.553 13
16. Kotaro Sakurai Status Grand Prix 1:39.701 14
17. Antonio Spavone Trident Racing 1:39.932 12
18. Alice Powell Status Grand Prix 1:40.002 13
19. Fabiano Machado Marussia Manor Racing 1:40.278 13
20. John Wartique Atech CRS GP 1:40.578 12
21. Ethan Ringel Atech CRS GP 1:40.640 12
22. Jakub Klasterka Jenzer Motorsport 1:41.053 14
23. Robert Cregan Ocean Racing Technology 1:41.112 13
24. Carmen Jorda Ocean Racing Technology 1:42.066 13
25. Vicky Piria Trident Racing 1:43:509 12
26. Kevin Ceccon Ocean Racing Technology 1:45.546 0

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