Jazeman Jaafar led a Carlin 1-2-3-4-5 in practice for the next British Formula 3 round at Donington on Thursday.
The Malaysian left it late to make his ultimate move – his best of 1:22.846 was enough to pip Rupert Svendsen-Cook to the top by a mere 0.032 of-a-second.
Both Jaafar and Svendsen-Cook find themselves in a tough battle for the runner-up spot in the series; however the pair were trailed by the man who currently holds that position – Kevin Magnussen.
Magnussen jumped into that position thanks to a victory at the last round at Rockingham and the Dane will be looking to solidify that position this weekend. A quickest lap of 1:22.984 placed Magnussen ahead of teammates Jack Harvey (4th) and Felipe Nasr (5th) as the flag fell for the final time in the afternoon.
Will Buller – another candidate for series vice-champion – finished the day’s practice in 6th position, nearly half-a-second shy of the ultimate pace. The Fortec man proved to be the quickest of the Mercedes-powered drivers and a solid three-tenths clear of British F3 guest pilot, Valtteri Bottas.
An off-track excursion into the gravel for Bottas at the end of the morning was unable to deter new GP3 Champion. The Double R Racing set the quickest time in the opening session; however he would fall to 7th in the standings as the afternoon drew on, despite shaving a tenth off his earlier pace.
Carlin’s Carlos Huertas assumed 8th position, although the Colombian proved to be only 0.001 of-a-second quicker than Fortec rookie Harry Tincknell – both of whom narrowly edged Pipo Derani toward the tail of the top ten.
Pietro Fantin (Hitech Racing) and Scott Pye (Double R) – both of whom picked up their first British F3 wins in Rockingham – completed the practice in 11th and 12th respectively.
T-Sport’s Menasheh Idafar was the first of the runner’s more than one second off of Jaafar’s pace. The Bahraini driver ended the day 13th, one-tenth ahead of the out of form Lucas Foresti.
Pos Driver Team/Car Time Gap 1. Jazeman Jaafar Carlin Dallara-VW 1m22.846s 2. Rupert Svendsen-Cook Carlin Dallara-VW 1m22.878s + 0.032s 3. Kevin Magnussen Carlin Dallara-VW 1m22.984s + 0.106s 4. Jack Harvey Carlin Dallara-VW 1m23.083s + 0.237s 5. Felipe Nasr Carlin Dallara-VW 1m23.204s + 0.358s 6. Will Buller Fortec Dallara-Merc 1m23.316s + 0.470s 7. Valtteri Bottas Double R Dallara-Merc 1m23.598s + 0.752s 8. Carlos Huertas Carlin Dallara-VW 1m23.731s + 0.885s 9. Harry Tincknell Fortec Dallara-Merc 1m23.732s + 0.886s 10. Pipo Derani Double R Dallara-Merc 1m23.757s + 0.911s 11. Pietro Fantin Hitech Dallara-VW 1m23.778s + 0.932s 12. Scott Pye Double R Dallara-Merc 1m23.828s + 0.982s 13. Menasheh Idafar T-Sport Dallara-VW 1m24.062s + 1.216s 14. Lucas Foresti Fortec Dallara-Merc 1m24.243s + 1.397s 15. Hywel Lloyd Sino Vision Dallara-Merc 1m24.308s + 1.462s 16. Fahmi Ilyas Fortec Dallara-Merc 1m24.596s + 1.750s 17. Yann Cunha T-Sport Dallara-VW 1m24.601s + 1.755s 18. Adderley Fong Sino Vision Dallara-Merc 1m24.811s + 1.965s 19. Max Snegirev Hitech Dallara-VW 1m25.034s + 2.188s 20. Bart Hylkema T-Sport Dallara-VW 1m25.138s + 2.292s 21. Kotaro Sakurai Hitech Dallara-Mugen 1m25.941s + 3.095s