Tom Dillmann is a happy boy today: the Frenchman bagged his first ever GP2 pole position in today’s qualifying session at the Hungaroring with a laptime of 1:28.219, a hair’s breadth ahead of teammate Sam Bird. Fabio Leimer took third.
It was still very hot in Hungary when the pitlane opened for today’s qualifying session. Marcus Ericsson was the man who set the early pace dipping under 1m29s with teammate Stéphane Richelmi in tow, both men showing once again how quick reigning champions DAMS are. Jolyon Palmer and Johnny Cecotto also found the pace to break the 1m29s barrier.
But on his first fast lap, Dillmann bettered Ericsson’s laptime by five tenths and claimed the top spot, and little did he know at that point that it was going to be enough to grab pole at the chequered flag. His teammate Bird moved up to second on the same lap but was four tenths slower than the Frenchman, leaving the DAMS pair in P3 and P4.
All the drivers returned to the pits for a set of fresh Soft Pirelli tyres and when the action picked up again, it was all about trying to get as close as possible to Dillmann’s laptime. Felipe Nasr who had only completed two laps in this morning’s free practice session moved up to third. That’s when Fabio Leimer was able to find some extra pace and clocked a laptime that put him second on the timesheet. In the dying minutes of the session, Bird put his head down and bettered the Swiss’ time, but ended 0.07s shy off Dillmann and the pole position.
At the chequered flag, Dillmann was all smiles as he pocketed his maiden GP2 pole and newcomers RUSSIAN TIME enjoyed their first front row lock out. Leimer ended third ahead of Nasr, Ericsson, Richelmi, Palmer, Rio Hayranto, Alexander Rossi and Daniel De Jong.