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GP2 Asia Pre-Season Testing (Yas Marina, February 6th)

February 6, 2011

Josef Kral and Michael Herck were the pace setters today on the slightly shortened layout of the Yas Marina circuit in Abu Dhabi.

Kral was quickest in the morning in his Arden International machine with a lap of 1:36.609, eventually finishing the session three-tenths quicker than next man Marcus Ericsson (iSport International). Spain’s Dani Clos made it three drivers from three different teams at the top following a 32-lap run, that saw the Racing Engineering driver register a best of 1:37.000.

Lotus-ART driver, Jules Bianchi, stayed near the top throughout the morning, before eventually dropping down to 4th (half-a-second slower than Kral) ahead of the leading Scuderia Coloni driver, Michael Herck.  Kral’s teammate and 2010 Formula 2 Series runner-up, Jolyon Palmer claimed sixth spot, nearly 0.8 of-a-second shy of the fastest lap. Oliver Turvey registered the most tours of the Abu Dhabi course; notching 40 laps before lunch. Unfortunately, Turvey could do no better than 1:37.961 – a time that left the Cumbrian 18th overall.
With three red flags, the session was a stop-start affair, but thankfully suffered none of the poor weather conditions that blighted last week’s running.

Come the afternoon session, Michael Herck jumped to the head of the timing list in Abu Dhabi; however it proved to be an incredibly close run for the test honours.
The Romanian was fastest with a lap 1:36.467, but reigning GP2 Asia Champion, Davide Valsecchi and Marcus Ericsson both registered a time 0.010 of-a-second slower than Herck. Jules Bianchi had another positive run in his Renault-powered Dallara – of his 28 laps, the Frenchman had a best of 1:37.592, leaving him only a few short hundredths quicker than Dani Clos.  Rodolfo Gonzalez made a visit to the top-six, despite only managing nineteen laps; the Trident Racing pilot just edged Josef Kral out of the headlines.

Several drivers broke the 30-lap barrier in the afternoon, with the DAMS pair of Romain Grosjean (12th) and Pål Verhaug (21st) and Barwa Addax racer Charles Pic (26th) all managing 36 tours.
Three further red flags tampered with the session, however disruptions did not last long. The test continues tomorrow.

Morning Session

Driver Team Laptime Laps
1. Josef Kral Arden International 1:36.609 26
2. Marcus Ericsson iSport International 1:36.912 21
3. Dani Clos Rcaing Engineering 1:37.000 32
4. Jules Bianchi Lotus ART 1:37.114 23
5. Michael Herck Scuderia Coloni 1:37.240 25
6. Jolyon Palmer Arden International 1:37.389 29
7. Rodolfo Gonzalez Trident Racing 1:37.484 22
8. Max Chilton Carlin 1:37.495 18
9. Charles Pic Barwa Addax Team 1:37.503 30
10. Giedo van der Garde Barwa Addax Team 1:37.592 21
11. Esteban Gutierrez Lotus ART 1:37.715 21
12. Sam Bird iSport International 1:37.725 17
13. Stefano Coletti Trident Racing 1:37.809 27
14. Julian Leal Rapax 1:37.814 24
15. Andrea Caldarelli Ocean Racing Technology 1:37.822 36
16. Davide Valsecchi Team AirAsia 1:37.846 21
17. Nathanael Berthon Racing Engineering 1:37.876 32
18. Oliver Turvey Ocean Racing Technology 1:37.961 40
19. Fabio Leimer Rapax 1:38.077 20
20. Luiz Razia Team AirAsia 1:38.095 24
21. Mikhail Aleshin Carlin 1:38.098 24
22. Fairuz Fauzy Super Nova Racing 1:38.226 11
23. Romain Grosjean Dams 1:38.421 24
24. James Jakes Scuderia Coloni 1:38.622 14
25. Pål Varhaug Dams 1:39.438 30
26. Johnny Cecotto Super Nova Racing 1:40.006 6

Afternoon Session

Driver Team Laptime Laps
1. Michael Herck Scuderia Coloni 1:36.467 27
2. Davide Valsecchi Team AirAsia 1:36.477 27
3. Marcus Ericsson iSport International 1:36.477 22
4. Jules Bianchi Lotus ART 1:36.592 28
5. Dani Clos Racing Engineering 1:36.655 24
6. Rodolfo Gonzalez Trident Racing 1:36.826 19
7. Josef Kral Arden International 1:36.834 28
8. Esteban Gutierrez Lotus ART 1:36.907 35
9. Max Chilton Carlin 1:36.908 16
10. James Jakes Scuderia Coloni 1:37.022 22
11. Sam Bird iSport International 1:37.030 32
12. Romain Grosjean Dams 1:37.076 36
13. Luiz Razia Team AirAsia 1:37.147 27
14. Andrea Caldarelli Ocean Racing Technology 1:37.155 21
15. Johnny Cecotto Super Nova Racing 1:37.226 27
16. Fairuz Fauzy Super Nova Racing 1:37.231 28
17. Fabio Leimer Rapax 1:37.304 32
18. Oliver Turvey Ocean Racing Technology 1:37.305 16
19. Stefano Coletti Trident Racing 1:37. 331 26
20. Mikhail Aleshin Carlin 1:37.419 24
21. Pål Varhaug Dams 1:37.734 36
22. Jolyon Palmer Arden International 1:37.912 9
23. Julian Leal Rapax 1:38.059 23
24. Nathanael Berthon Racing Engineering 1:38.523 24
25. Giedo van der Garde Barwa Addax Team 1:39.176 31
26. Charles Pic Barwa Addax Team 1:39.495 36
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