Fabio Leimer fastest but Rossi impresses

The last 2011 post-season test day took place today at Circuit de Catalunya. The paddock welcomed two new faces for the occasion, namely Pole Kuba Giermaziak at iSport and Spaniard Albert Costa at Super Nova Racing. GP2 race winner Giacomo Ricci returned to the field at Super Nova, GP3 2011 runner-up James Calado rejoined Lotus ART, and Sam Bird tested again with Trident Racing.

The session opened in cooler conditions than yesterday and it was Fabio Leimer who set the early pace ahead of rookie Rio Haryanto at Dams. A red flag interrupted the proceedings in the first hour after Carlin’s Kevin Magnussen went into the gravel bed at Turn 5. At mid-session, Esteban Gutierrez went top, 0.5s quicker than Leimer while Bird slipped into P2 ahead of Kevin Ceccon. But Leimer topped the timesheet again, going 0.2s quicker than the Lotus ART ace. Minutes later, Alexander Rossi moved up to P3 but Stefano Coletti at Coloni found extra pace to edge the American out. The session was red flagged for the second time after rookie Costa stopped on track. At the re-start, Leimer held on to the top spot ahead of Bird. A final red flag happened in the dying minutes when Haryanto stopped on track. Leimer ended the morning session on top ahead of Bird and Gutierrez. Magnussen, Coletti, Ceccon, Antonio Felix Da Costa, Rossi, Haryanto and Julian Leal completed the top 10.

The afternoon session started with American Rossi topping the timesheet early on leaving his rivals with no other choice but to try and better his laptime. Brendon Hartley at Ocean Racing was the closest to the American and remained ahead of his teammate Felix Da Costa for most of the session. At the start of the final hour, Jake Rosenwzeig at Barwa Addax move up to P3. While most of the drivers were busy doing race simulations, Coletti went top, 0.1s quicker than Rossi but at that point Rossi was on race simulation runs and was not trying to go faster. Nathanael Berthon made his way up to P3. At the checkered flag, Coletti remained on top although he did not beat Leimer’s fastest morning laptime because the track was hotter by now. Rossi, Berthon, Hartley, Jake Rosenzweig, Felix Da Costa, Fabio Onidi, Nigel Melker, Julian Leal and Leimer rounded up the top 10. The session was briefly interrupted once when James Calado stopped at turn 6.

Today marked the end of the post-season tests. The GP2 Series will be back in action in three weeks at Yas Marina Circuit for the 2011 GP2 Final in Abu Dhabi alongside Formula One.

Morning session

Pos Driver Team Laptime Laps
1. Fabio Leimer Racing Engineering 1:29.324 30
2. Sam Bird Trident Racing 1:29.549 20
3. Esteban Gutierrez Lotus ART 1:29.588 34
4. Kevin Magnussen Carlin 1:29.697 27
5. Stefano Coletti Scuderia Coloni 1:29.736 25
6. Kevin Ceccon Scuderia Coloni 1:29.753 24
7. Antonio Felix Da Costa Ocean Racing Technology 1:29.758 27
8. Alexander Rossi Caterham Team AirAsia 1:29.808 20
9. Rio Haryanto Dams 1:29.827 36
10. Julian Leal Rapax 1:29.851 29
11. Jolyon Palmer Carlin 1:29.916 36
12. Nathanael Berthon Racing Engineering 1:29.931 18
13. Josef Kral Barwa Addax Team 1:30.024 33
14. Stéphane Richelmi Trident Racing 1:30.025 38
15. Simon Trummer Arden International 1:30.219 30
16. Brendon Hartley Ocean Racing Technology 1:30.268 31
17. Nigel Melker iSport International 1:30.276 24
18. James Calado Lotus ART 1:30.308 28
19. Craig Dolby Arden International 1:30.374 21
20. Adrian Quaife-Hobbs Dams 1:30.446 36
21. Jakes Rosenzweig Barwa Addax Team 1:30.603 34
22. Albert Costa Super Nova Racing 1:30.604 35
23. Rodolfo Gonzalez Caterham Team AirAsia 1:30.944 35
24. Fabio Onidi Rapax 1:30.998 30
25. Giacomo Ricci Super Nova Racing 1:31.031 26
26. Kuba Giermaziak iSport International !;31.043 24

Afternoon Session

Pos Driver Team Laptime Laps
1. Stefano Coletti Scuderia Coloni 1:30.607 21
2. Alexander Rossi Caterham Team AirAsia 1:30.749 53
3. Nathanael Berthon Racing Engineering 1:31.023 18
4. Brendon Hartley Ocean Racing Technology 1:31.075 28
5. Jake Rosenzweig Barwa Addax Team 1:31.088 34
6. Antonio Felix Da Costa Ocean Racing Technology 1:31.093 37
7. Fabio Onidi Rapax 1:31.116 36
8. Nigel Melker iSport International 1:31.131 37
9. Julian Leal Rapax 1:31.221 20
10. Fabio Leimer Racing Engineering 1:31.274 35
11. Giacomo Ricci Super Nova Racing 1:31.281 21
12. Josef Kral Barwa Addax Team 1:31.411 32
13. Kevin Magnussen Carlin 1:31.562 14
14. Albert Costa Super Nova Racing 1:31.650 21
15. Kevin Ceccon Scuderia Coloni 1:31.697 33
16. Adrian Quaife-Hobbs Dams 1:31.698 34
17. Kuba Giermaziak iSport International 1:31.933 34
18. Jolyon Palmer Carlin 1:31.984 36
19. Craig Dolby Arden International 1:32.282 30
20. Rodolfo Gonzalez Caterham Team AirAsia 1:32.282 32
21. Sam Bird Trident Racing 1:32.324 32
22. Esteban Gutierrez Lotus ART 1:33.270 36
23. Rio Haryanto Dams 1:33.485 42
24. James Calado Lotus ART 1:33.655 45
25. Stéphane Richelmi Trident Racing 1:34.242 35
26. Simon Trummer Arden International 1:35.083 46

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