Luca Ghiotto, Andrea Pizzitola and Mathéo Tuscher made the best of the end of year GP3 Series tests at the Yas Marina cirrcuit this week.
Although the experienced Kevin Ceccon topped the times at the end of day one in his Jenzer machine, it was Pizzitola who got the ball rolling in his ART Grand Prix machine, with Ed Jones (Carlin) and Antonio Fuoco (Koiranen GP) also setting the early pace.
There was a brief stoppage in time when Raoul Hyman (Jenzer) stopped on circuit. Thereafter Ceccon set a quickest of 1:55:501s, demoting the rest of the pack as the morning wore on, with Pizzitola dropping behind Jones and George Russell (Arden).
Pizzitola got on the pace early in the later session, although some time was lost when Alex Palou spun his Trident car. More time was lost later in the session when Fuoco stopped on track, but that was followed by an accident for Matt Rao who hit the barriers in turn three.
Tuscher made the best of the day two sessions, while Ghiotto at least headed the morning times.
The opening session was interrupted almost as early as it had started when Tatiana Calderon (ART Grand Prix), hit the barriers in turn two. Upon restart, Fuoco (now with Carlin) took to the top of the timings, only to beaten later by Palou, before Dylan Young (Hilmer) spun bringing out a second red flag. Thereafter Fuoco went faster still until Ghiotto blitzed all-comers – a status assured when Jack Aitken (Carlin) crashed at turn nineteen.
Mitch Gilbert (Arden) and Jimmy Eriksson (Koiranen GP) tangled with the top spot in the early afternoon running, before Ghiotto set a faster time, while Seb Morris improved to 2nd, impressing in his Status GP drive. Soft tyre runs ruled the roost late in the day, with many improving, including Tuscher who best of 1:55.583s proved a mere eight-thousandths faster than Morris.
Fuoco joined Ghiotto at the top of the class on the final day, but it was the latter who proved fastest of the pair. As with the GP2 tests, the final day proved the quickest by far, with the final times nearly half-a-second up on the opening two days. While Fuoco controlled the top from Palou, it was a difficult morning for Riccardo Agostini and Kourosh Khani (both Hilmer), both of whom stopped on circuit.
Fuoco was again quick after the break, but so too was Tuscher who found the peak, while Eriksson and Jones showed their form. Yet it was Ghiotto who helped himself to head of the pack with a best of 1:55.132s – setting what was easily the best-timed lap of the week.
GP3 Series; 2014 Post-season test: Combined classification Pos Driver Team Time Laps 1. Luca Ghiotto Trident 1:55.134s 160 2. Antonio Fuoco ART GP 1:55.298s 56 3. Kevin Ceccon Jenzer 1:55.501s 26 4. Mathéo Tuscher Jenzer 1:55.369s 146 5. Ed Jones Carlin 1:55.378s 94 6. Alex Palou Trident 1:55.590s 86 7. Seb Morris Status GP 1:55.591s 155 8. Ralph Boschung Jenzer 1:55.392s 153 9. Jack Aitken Carlin 1:55.435s 106 10. Mitch Gilbert ART GP 1:55.452s 66 11. Matt Parry Koiranen GP 1:55.635s 58 12. Alex Palou ART GP 1:55.649s 53 13. Jimmy Eriksson Koiranen GP 1:55.660s 69 14. Antonio Fuoco Carlin 1:55.684s 59 15. Gustavo Menezes Status GP 1:55.709s 106 16. Matt Parry Status GP 1:55.744s 104 17. Alfonso Celis Jr ART GP 1:55.763s 117 18. Andrea Pizzitola Arden Int. 1:55.764s 110 19. Mitch Gilbert Arden Int. 1:55.815s 104 20. Andrea Pizzitola ART GP 1:55.832s 54 21. Steijn Schothorst Koiranen GP 1:55.888s 81 22. Steijn Schothorst Status GP 1:55.888s 54 23. Artur Janosz Arden Int. 1:56.060s 111 24. George Russell Arden Int. 1:56.078s 50 25. Riccardo Agostini Hilmer 1:56.151s 60 26. Kang Ling Jenzer 1:56.256s 17 27. Artur Janosz ART GP 1:56.258s 43 28. Amaury Bonduel Trident 1:56.298s 155 29. Patrick Kujala Arden Int. 1:56.309s 44 30. Raoul Hyman Jenzer 1:56.316s 113 31. Ryan Cullen Koiranen GP 1:56.354s 94 32. Matt Rao Carlin 1:56.377s 159 33. Christopher Mies Hilmer 1:56.474s 60 34. Alfonso Celis Jr Status GP 1:56.491s 48 35. Gustavo Menezes Carlin 1:56.560s 49 36. Tatiana Calderon ART GP 1:56.697s 88 37. Antonio Fuoco Koiranen GP 1:56.783s 46 38. Zaid Ashkanani Trident 1:57.092s 53 39. Kang Ling Hilmer 1:57.114s 108 40. Raoul Hyman Arden Int. 1:57.664s 56 41. Kourosh Khani Hilmer 1:58.454s 64 42. Dylan Young Hilmer 1:58.609s 59