Christensen Keeps A Cool Head And Claims The Poles. Valencia, 21 August. There were three very happy drivers after qualifying in Valencia. Michael Christensen (DK/MÃ¼cke Motorsport) was delighted to be on pole. Jim Pla (FR/DAMS) was second and...
Christensen Keeps A Cool Head And Claims The Poles.
Valencia, 21 August. There were three very happy drivers after qualifying in Valencia. Michael Christensen (DK/Mücke Motorsport) was delighted to be on pole. Jim Pla (FR/DAMS) was second and this was his best qualifying of the year. Felipe Nasr (BR/Eurointernational), whose 17th birthday it is today, was third on a track he had never driven on before this morning.
As expected it was hot in the Spanish seaside resort. The free practice session was held in temperatures of 24º Celsius for the air and 28º Celsius for the track, but by the afternoon the air temperature had gone up three degrees and the track 12.
Not surprisingly the track conditions had changed in the time between the end of free practice at 09.15 and the start of qualifying at 12.50. The grip levels had increased and so the best time went up by over a second and a half. There were no serious incidents but in the free practice there was a collision between Kazeem Manzur (GB/Josef Kaufmann Racing) and William Buller (GB/Fortec Motorsport), which Manzur immediately claimed was his fault. Then in qualifying Jazeman Jaafar (MY/Eifelland Racing) tagged the back of Rupert Svendsen-Cook's car and damaged his front wing.
The front runners put in a very fast pace with Christensen fastest by 0.846 secs and only the first four cars were covered by a second.
The Fisichella Motorsport team is not racing in either Valencia or the next rounds in Spa-Francorchamps, so Doru Sechelariu has moved to Motaworld Racing Europe Ltd, who had a spare car as Zimbabwe's Axcil Jefferies did not make it to Spain.
Pole - Rounds 11&12: Michael Christensen (DK/Mücke Motorsport): "I did say this was my favourite circuit, but now I have changed my mind a little bit even though I am very happy to be on pole. This year when you know the circuit a little bit then it is different to last year. I now prefer other circuits as there are not so many challenging corners here, but it is nice despite this. Nobody knew the circuit last year so that is why last year we improved more from practice to qualifying. I think the circuit was better initially this year so didn't change that much and we knew what we were going into."
2nd Rounds 11&12: Jim Pla (FR/DAMS): "I am very happy with that. On my first set of tyres I was second quickest and then again with my second set. I made a mistake on my last lap, but it was still good. I now hope to make a
good start and win. This morning the track was very dirty but now it has a lot of grip."
3rd - Round 11 & 4th Round 12: Felipe Nasr (BR/Eurointernational): "This result was okay for my first time here at this circuit, which I think is a very nice one. I always like to be first but not knowing the track, coming here and being third is okay. I am now leading the championship so am focusing on doing good races here and that is it. I think the car is good, but maybe we can make some adjustments for the race."
5th Rounds 11&12 and top Rookie: Robin Frijns (NL/Josef Kaufmann Racing): "I feel like I could do a time for the top three, but it is just not possible. It is not a typical street circuit as all the braking points are wide open so if you miss your braking point it is okay. That is quite boring as in Monaco if you miss your braking point you are in the wall!