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Valsecchi quickest again in Jerez GP2 test

March 1, 2012

Circuito de Jerez. © Creative Commons / Will Pittenger

GP2 veteran Davide Valsecchi topped the timesheets on the second day of GP2 pre-season testing Jerez yesterday.

The Italian registered a best of 1:24.783 in his DAMS machine during the morning – already more than 1.2 seconds quicker than the fastest from day one – beating Mexican rival Esteban Gutierrez (Lotus) by four-tenths.

In what transpired to be a busy day at the circuit in Southern Spain, Valsecchi logged 60 laps, with Gutierrez going five further. Marussia-Carlin’s Max Chilton also broke the sixty lap mark, taking 3rd by the end of the day with a lap half-a-second shy of Valsecchi.
Indeed both Gutierrez and Chilton briefly held the top spot, before deposed by the quick Valsecchi.

While many concentrated on short stints and qualifying simulations in the early sessions, the afternoon was dictated by race runs, allowing numerous runners to contribute long stints.
iSport duo Joylon Palmer (5th, 65 laps) and Marcus Ericsson (6th, 63 laps) also climbed to the top of the sheets temporarily, before dropping down the order at the break of play. Not only were Palmer and Ericsson pipped by the top three as the day aged, Scuderia Coloni’s Stefano Coletti also toppled the pair to assume 4th.

Wednesday was quieter day for Dani Clos (Rapax, 7th) and Fabio Onidi (Scuderia Coloni, 8th) – both of whom clocked up only 36 and 46 laps respectively.

Lotus’ James Calado broke the timing barrier more often than most, when he completed 72 tours of the Jerez circuit, claiming 9th best. Calado enjoyed a three-tenths advantage over Racing Engineering’s Fabio Leimer, who rounded out the top ten just ahead of Giedo van der Garde (Caterham, 11th) and Stephane Richelmi (Trident, 12th).

The morning was broken up by another red flag when British F3 champion Felipe Nasr spun his way into the gravel on cold tyres.
Ocean Racing Technology pairing Nigel Melker and Tom Dillmann experienced their share of misfortune today. Dillmann stopped early in the afternoon with a gearbox problem, capping his day’s total to 32 laps, while Melker only managed 2 laps in the morning, before clashing with the barrier early on.
A spin from Racing Engineering’s Nathanael Berthon and a mechanical failure for Julian Leal (Trident) brought out two more stoppage’s as the day aged.

Pos  Driver                   Team                      Time      Laps
 1.  Davide Valsecchi         DAMS                      1:24.783   60
 2.  Esteban Gutierrez        Lotus GP                  1:25.193   65
 3.  Max Chilton              Carlin                    1:25.294   61
 4.  Stefano Coletti          Scuderia Coloni           1:25.358   56
 5.  Jolyon Palmer            iSport International      1:25.359   65
 6.  Marcus Ericsson          iSport International      1:25.374   63
 7.  Dani Clos                Rapax                     1:25.467   36
 8.  Fabio Onidi              Scuderia Coloni           1:25.505   46
 9.  James Calado             Lotus GP                  1:25.569   72
10.  Fabio Leimer             Racing Engineering        1:25.845   51
11.  Giedo van der Garde      Caterham Racing           1:25.893   52
12.  Stephane Richelmi        Trident Racing            1:25.903   60
13.  Felipe Nasr              DAMS                      1:26.006   66
14.  Simon Trummer            Arden International       1:26.017   63
15.  Luiz Razia               Arden International       1:26.049   66
16.  Julian Leal              Trident Racing            1:26.128   48
17.  Tom Dillmann             Ocean Racing Technology   1:26.177   32
18.  Josef Kral               Barwa Addax Team          1:26.351   56
19.  Vittorio Ghirelli        Venezuela GP Lazarus      1:26.477   47
20.  Rio Haryanto             Carlin                    1:26.545   55
21.  Fabrizio Crestani        Venezuela GP Lazarus      1:26.551   39
22.  Nathanael Berthon        Racing Engineering        1:26.648   49
23.  Johnny Cecotto           Barwa Addax Team          1:26.665   28
24.  Rodolfo Gonzalez         Catheram Racing           1:26.707   61
25.  Daniel de Jong           Rapax                     1:26.712   49
26.  Nigel Melker             Ocean Racing Technology   1:41.035    2
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