“Palmer grabs GP2 Hockenheim pole”

Palmer on pole. © Sam Bloxham/GP2 Series Media Service.
Palmer on pole. © Sam Bloxham/GP2 Series Media Service.

Jolyon Palmer secured his third GP2 Series pole of the season at Hockenheim today.

Despite running the fewest laps of the session, the DAMS man nailed the one that counted, with a best of 1:23.383s coming on his third of eight laps.

It is a result that gives championship leader Palmer an additional four points, building his lead to 38 over Carlin rival Felipe Nasr.

ART Grand Prix’s Stoffel Vandoorne will line up aside Palmer on the front row; however the Belgian driver’s best lap was still some three-tenths shy of Palmer’s effort.

Stefano Coletti (Racing Engineering) took 3rd on the grid, leading a tightly packed trio, which also consisted of GP2 Series returnee Tom Dillmann (Caterham, 4th) and Nasr (5th).
Campos Racing’s Arthur Pic continued his solid form to secure 6th on the grid, ahead of Raffaele Marciello, who lost two quick laps due to being blocked; first by Takuya Izawa and then by Rio Haryanto, both of whom attracted three-place grid drops.

Rounding out the fourth row will be Haryanto’s Caterham teammate, Alexander Rossi, followed by Rapax racer Simon Trummer. Johnny Cecotto Jr had originally set the 7th fastest time; however the Venezuelan was docked three positions for impeding Haryanto while on a quick tour.
Disappointingly Silverstone race winner Mitch Evans could do no better than 15th in his RUSSIAN TIME entry.

Although not quickest in any of the individual sectors, Palmer pole strung all his personal bests together – a feat matched by only Coletti – to pip Stoffel Vandoorne by over two-tenths.
If anything, this was a qualifying session characterised by inconsistencies throughout the field. As temperatures continued to rise, laptimes faltered from sector to sector while the Pirelli’s peeled away at a dramatic rate.

Some relative parity existed across the middle sector; however it appears Palmer’s opposition lost out through the first and final sector, where driver’s appeared to be losing tenths at a go.
Should similar weather conditions continue tomorrow, it may result in an interesting race, although maybe not a classic – from this point, it seems unlikely those who push the hardest will be the winners.
Watch out for the unflappable one who quietly controls the race under the German heat.

2014 GP2 Round of Hockenheim (Rd 6, Race 1 qualifying)
Pos Driver               Team                  Time       Gap     Laps
 1. Jolyon Palmer        DAMS                  1m23.383s            8
 2. Stoffel Vandoorne    ART                   1m23.665s  +0.282s  12
 3. Stefano Coletti      Racing Engineering    1m23.722s  +0.339s  12
 4. Tom Dillmann         Caterham              1m23.776s  +0.393s  11
 5. Felipe Nasr          Carlin                1m23.781s  +0.398s  12
 6. Arthur Pic           Campos                1m23.859s  +0.436s  12
 8. Raffaele Marciello   Racing Engineering    1m23.918s  +0.535s  12
 9. Alexander Rossi      Campos                1m23.965s  +0.582s  13
10. Simon Trummer        Rapax                 1m23.983s  +0.600s  12
 7. Johnny Cecotto       Trident               1m23.860s  +0.477s  14*
11. Stephane Richelmi    DAMS                  1m24.024s  +0.641s  12
12. Rene Binder          Arden                 1m24.094s  +0.711s  10
13. Nathanael Berthon    Lazarus               1m24.253s  +0.870s  11
14. Daniel Abt           Hilmer                1m24.311s  +0.928s  12
15. Mitch Evans          Russian Time          1m24.335s  +0.952s  11
16. Julian Leal          Carlin                1m24.421s  +1.038s  11
17. Conor Daly           Lazarus               1m24.437s  +1.054s  11
18. Jon Lancaster        Hilmer                1m24.453s  +1.070s  14
19. Andre Negrao         Arden                 1m24.476s  +1.093s  11
20. Artem Markelov       Russian Time          1m24.496s  +1.113s  11
21. Adrian Quaife-Hobbs  Rapax                 1m24.590s  +1.20?s  12
22. Sergio Canamasas     Trident               1m24.598s  +1.215s  13
23. Takuya Izawa         ART                   1m24.335s  +0.952s  11**
24. Marco Sorensen       MP                    1m24.888s  +1.505s  13
25. Rio Haryanto         Caterham              1m24.502s  +1.119s  11*
26. Daniel de Jong       MP                    1m25.189s  +1.806s  11

*Cecotto Jr and Haryanto: 3-place grid drops for blocking.
**Izawa: 3-place grid drop for blocking, plus additional penalty following Silverstone round.

Vandoorne was also quick. © Sam Bloxham/GP2 Series Media Service.
Vandoorne was also quick. © Sam Bloxham/GP2 Series Media Service.

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