Hirate quickest in first free practice Manor Motorsport's Kohei Hirate was quickest in opening free practice for the Polytec Formula 3 Macau Grand Prix, after outpacing Prema Powerteam's Roberto Streit by 0.545...
Hirate quickest in first free practice
Manor Motorsport's Kohei Hirate was quickest in opening free practice for the Polytec Formula 3 Macau Grand Prix, after outpacing Prema Powerteam's Roberto Streit by 0.545 seconds.
Hirate put in the best time on his final lap of practice, as most drivers spent the session acclimatising to the challenging Guia street circuit
Kazuki Nakajima, who has just been confirmed as a test driver for the Williams Formula 1 team, was third quickest with his final lap - which was just three thousandths of a second slower than Streit.
British Formula 3 Champion Mike Conway had topped the times for most of the session, making the most of his experience of the circuit from his debut last year, but was demoted to fourth overall after a flurry of quick times right at the chequered flag.
Adrian Sutil, the Japanese Formula 3 Champion, ended the session fifth overall and said he loved his first taste of the track. "It is awesome, almost unbelievable," he said. "I am still adjusting to driving here, and think there is a lot more to come from me. Getting a good slipstream here is important, it can be worth about one second, so it will be important to be quite clever for qualifying."
Carlin Motorsport's Sebastian Vettel was thankful to just get some laps under his belt after spending most of the first 20 minutes of the session in the pits as his mechanics worked to resolve an engine problem.
"It wasn't running properly but we managed to fix it," said Vettel, who ended up eighth overall. "At least I got out on the track, because things could have been worse. And for the few laps I did the car feels okay."
The session was relatively incident free. Daisuke Ikeda ended up backwards in the barriers at Lisboa after being spun around by another car, while Kazuya Oshima damaged his front left wheel and suspension after swiping the barriers at R Bend.