Oliver Rowland will start the second Formula Renault 3.5 race from pole position at Spa-Francorchamps after a sensational last-gasp effort in qualifying.
Rowland set the early pace on 2m01.033s, faster than Fortec teammate Jazeman Jaafar by 0.015s, but the session was interrupted when Philo Paz Armand crashed after nine minutes of the 30-minute session.
On the second runs, the times tumbled in the final five minutes. Pole switched between Dean Stoneman on 1m59.898s, then Tio Ellinas on 1m59.681, then Jaafar on 1m59.602s – with Rowland down in fourth.
McLaren junior Nyck de Vries lowered the pole time to 1m59.310s, before Ellinas snatched it back with 1m59.154s with less than a minute to go.
The destiny of pole would be decided as the cars passed by the chequered flag – and a late crash for Roy Nissany did affect the final lap, and stewards will look closely at who improved sector times in the yellow flag zones.
Ellinas didn’t improve on his last lap, but Rowland did with 1m59.092s – snatching top spot by 0.062s with a stonking middle sector.
De Vries didn’t improve but will start third, two-tenths off pole, with Jaafar setting the fastest first sector time on his final lap but a slow middle sector means he didn’t go faster when it mattered and will start fourth.
Yesterday’s winner Matthieu Vaxiviere could only manage fifth, three-tenths off pole, ahead of Stoneman and yesterday’s front row man Nicholas Latifi.
The star of Saturday qualifying, before she was excluded for a technical infringement, Beitske Visser will start 14th, 1.1s off the pace.
|1||Oliver Rowland||Fortec Motorsports||1m59.092|
|2||Tio Ellinas||Strakka Racing||1m59.154||0.062|
|3||Nyck de Vries||DAMS||1m59.310||0.218|
|4||Jazeman Jaafar||Fortec Motorsports||1m59.336||0.244|
|7||Nicholas Latifi||Arden Motorsport||1m59.702||0.610|
|8||Tom Dillmann||Jagonya Ayam with Carlin||1m59.941||0.849|
|9||Egor Orudzhev||Arden Motorsport||2m00.039||0.947|
|10||Pietro Fantin||International Draco Racing||2m00.193||1.101|
|11||Gustav Malja||Strakka Racing||2m00.196||1.104|
|12||Aurelien Panis||Tech 1 Racing||2m00.219||1.127|
|13||Roy Nissany||Tech 1 Racing||2m00.223||1.131|
|16||Sean Gelael||Jagonya Ayam with Carlin||2m00.753||1.661|
|17||Meindert van Buuren||Lotus||2m00.757||1.665|
|18||Roberto Merhi||Pons Racing||2m01.082||1.990|
|19||Bruno Bonifacio||International Draco Racing||2m01.666||2.574|