Russell wins second straight F2 pole in Austria

Russell wins second straight F2 pole in Austria

International Racing

Russell wins second straight F2 pole in Austria

George Russell waltzed to the fastest time in the 2018 FIA Formula 2 Championship qualifying session at Spielberg, Austria, setting a 1m13.541s lap on his final run to grab a second consecutive pole position. The ART Grand Prix driver beat championship leader Lando Norris to the top spot, with Norris’ Carlin teammate Sergio Sette Camara taking third.

With huge, black clouds looming over the Red Bull Ring, the drivers quickly swarmed the circuit in the early stages in order to secure a lap time. Norris was first to hit the road, alongside Russell and his ART teammate Jack Aitken – the former setting the first timed lap of the session. With the initial pace slow, Trident’s Arjun Maini was first to bring the lap times into the right ballpark, getting into the 1m15s before the rest of the field joined him.

After the first flurry of hot laps, Russell led the way after setting a 1m14.104s, before going for an even faster run following threats from Aitken and Sette Camara. Having covered off strong sectors from the pair, Russell consolidated his advantage ahead of the mid-session lull in running, bringing the benchmark into the 1m13s as everyone pitted for new supersoft tires.

Russell, not wanting to waste any time, got the running back underway with Nyck de Vries of Pertamina Prema Theodore Racing in tow, but Aitken began the next phase of timed laps to momentarily go second – fractions behind Russell’s quickest lap. The Mercedes F1 reserve driver quickly made short work of his teammate, raising the bar higher before Aitken was put further out of reach as Norris and Sette Camara respectively split the two ARTs.

To put pole out of the reach of the two chasing Carlin drivers, Russell took a further three-hundredths of a second out of his best lap to secure pole, as Norris went wide on his final run to concede defeat – with Sette Camara just half a tenth behind.

Aitken completed the session in fourth ahead of Maini, as Maximilian Gunther (BWT Arden) will start tomorrow’s race from sixth on the grid as Charouz Racing System’s Louis Deletraz occupies seventh. Alexander Albon (DAMS) suffered his worst qualifying result of the year in eighth, as de Vries and RUSSIAN TIME’s Tadasuke Makino complete the top ten.

Driver
Team
Time
Laps
1
George Russell
ART Grand Prix
1:13.541
14
2
Lando Norris
Carlin
1:13.779
14
3
Sergio Sette Camara
Carlin
1:13.823
13
4
Jack Aitken
ART Grand Prix
1:13.961
14
5
Arjun Maini
Trident
1:13.999
14
6
Maximilian Gunther
BWT Arden
1:14.014
13
7
Louis Deletraz
Charouz Racing System
1:14.104
14
8
Alexander Albon
DAMS
1:14.115
14
9
Nyck de Vries
PERTAMINA PREMA Theodore Racing
1:14.171
14
10
Tadasuke Makino
RUSSIAN TIME
1:14.201
14
11
Luca Ghiotto
Campos Vexatec Racing
1:14.309
16
12
Roberto Merhi
MP Motorsport
1:14.323
14
13
Antonio Fuoco
Charouz Racing System
1:14.330
14
14
Santino Ferrucci
Trident
1:14.334
14
15
Sean Gelael
PERTAMINA PREMA Theodore Racing
1:14.363
16
16
Ralph Boschung
MP Motorsport
1:14.389
14
17
Nirei Fukuzumi
BWT Arden
1:14.400
14
18
Artem Markelov
RUSSIAN TIME
1:14.589
15
19
Nicholas Latifi
DAMS
1:14.700
14
20
Roy Nissany
Campos Vexatec Racing
1:15.436
16

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