Sepang: James Calado leads in Free Practice

ART Grand Prix driver sets the pace in opening round

By Franck Drui

22 March 2013 - 06:05
Sepang: James Calado leads in Free (...)

The 2013 season kicked off in the best possible way for title hopeful James Calado: the ART driver set the fastest laptime of the free practice session this morning at Sepang International Circuit with a 1:45.403. Simon Trummer ended a hundredth shy behind the Brit.

The first free practice session of the ninth GP2 Series season opened in hot temperatures as the twenty-six drivers took to the track on Hard Pirelli tyres. Stefano Coletti was the first one out of the pitlane and was quick to set the pace, but his teammate Trummer improved on his flying second lap and moved up to P1.

The Swiss did not enjoy his time at the top for too long however as James Calado found some extra pace to improve on Trummer’s laptime by a hair’s breadth. Behind the pair, Tom Dillmann was quickest in the first two sectors, but a slower third sector put him in P3 ahead of rookie Mitch Evans.

The session was trouble free as the drivers came to grips with the track. Julian Leal took a short trip to the gravel bed at turn 4 before rejoining safely whilst Kevin Ceccon made one to the run-off area in a close call with Sergio Canamasas.. As the minutes dropped down, the standings remained unchanged at the top, and at the chequered flag, Calado could enjoy sitting pretty at the top of the standings for the first session of the season. Marcus Ericsson, Felipe Nasr, Johnny Cecotto, Stefano Coletti, Rio Haryanto and Stéphane Richelmi completed the top ten.

With fourteen drivers running within one second of each other and the weather being unpredictable in Malaysia, today’s qualifying session promises to deliver some big surprises as the 26 drivers will be eager to kick-start their campaign in the best possible way.

1. James Calado ART Grand Prix 1:45.403 11
2. Simon Trummer Rapax 1:45.422 13
3. Tom Dillmann RUSSIAN TIME 1:45.589 13
4. Mitch Evans Arden International 1:45.668 13
5. Marcus Ericsson DAMS 1:45.750 12
6. Felipe Nasr Carlin 1:45.784 13
7. Johnny Cecotto Arden International 1:45.796 12
8. Stefano Coletti Rapax 1:45.846 13
9. Rio Haryanto Barwa Addax Team 1:45.850 13
10. Stéphane Richelmi DAMS 1:45.865 13
11. Daniel De Jong MP Motorsport 1:46.000 14
12. Fabio Leimer Racing Engineering 1:46.140 10
13. Julian Leal Racing Engineering 1:46.193 7
14. Jolyon Palmer Carlin 1:46.357 13
15. Rene Binder Venezuela GP Lazarus 1:46.374 12
16. Kevin Giovesi Venezuela GP Lazarus 1:46.590 14
17. Sergio Canamasas Caterham Racing 1:46.595 13
18. Daniel Abt ART Grand Prix 1:46.635 13
19. Sam Bird RUSSIAN TIME 1:46.694 14
20. Nathanaël Berthon Trident Racing 1:46.695 11
21. Jake Rosenzweig Barwa Addax Team 1:46.737 12
22. Adrian Quaife-Hobbs MP Motorsport 1:46.934 13
23. Conor Daly Hilmer Motorsport 1:47.303 13
24. Kevin Ceccon Trident Racing 1:47.355 9
25. Pal Varhaug Hilmer Motorsport 1:48.550 14
26. Ma Qing Hua Caterham Racign 1:48.829 13



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