Silverstone FR3.5: Ellinas beats title contenders for maiden pole

Tio Ellinas maintained his practice-topping speed in Saturday qualifying at Silverstone to secure a home pole for British team Strakka.

Ellinas edged championship rivals Matthieu Vaxiviere and Oliver Rowland with several improved laps in quick succession in the final minutes.

With light rain falling on the circuit in the early hours of the morning, the track was declared wet as qualifying got underway - albeit the drivers took to the track on slicks.

The first green-flag stretch lasted just a few minutes as Roy Nissany stopping in Turn 4 brought out the yellows before Lotus newcomer Nick Yelloly went off in the gravel and got beached, leading to a full-on red flag.

When the session restarted, it was Draco's Pietro Fantin who led after the first stint of flyers, with points leader Rowland down in P11.

But the drivers' laps in the latter half of the session proved much quicker as Ellinas shaved more than a second off the previous benchmark with four minutes to go.

Stoneman briefly took the top spot off the Cypriot, but Ellinas responded immediately, retaining the top spot.

Rowland and Vaxiviere closed in on the Strakka driver in the dying seconds, yet the Cypriot held the lead to claim maiden pole.

Vaxiviere wound up second, with Rowland sharing row two with Fortec teammate Jazeman Jaafar.

Fantin ended up fifth, ahead of Tom Dillmann, Nicholas Latifi and Nyck de Vries, while Aurelien Panis and Gustav Malja made up row five.

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About this article
Series Formula V8 3.5
Event Silverstone
Sub-event Saturday qualifying
Track Silverstone
Drivers Tio Ellinas , Matthieu Vaxivière , Oliver Rowland
Teams Strakka Racing
Article type Qualifying report