Grubmüller quickest in Snetterton test

Austrian Walter Grubmüller once again set the pace in testing for the British Formula 3 International series with the quickest time at Snetterton on Thursday.  The 19 year-old Hitech Racing driver posted a time of 1min 1.9secs around the Norfolk track with his 17 year-old team-mate Max Chilton just three tenths of a second adrift. Walter’s performance re-confirmed his pre-season testing pace when he ran consistently in the top five prior to his superb performance in the opening rounds at Oulton. Yesterday, the teenager from Vienna was delighted with the return to form that also saw him top the time sheets in the wet prior to the last rounds of the championship.

“It was a very good test for me today,” said Walter.  “It’s great to be back on top again after being quickest in the last test. Now we’ve shown we can be quick in the wet and the dry. The car was great today and everything just came together. Now looking forward to the next rounds, I know it will be very important for me to be really on it for qualifying to give me a shot at getting a podium finish.”

BRDC Superstar Max, who passed his driving test last Friday the 13th, was equally happy with his session and his sixth quickest time.  The Reigate teenager remains confident now ahead of the next rounds of the championship at Thruxton next weekend.  “It was a good test.” said Max. “We did a lot of laps and really learnt a great deal. We did three runs on different dampers which proved productive and I’m very happy to be right up at the sharp end as we prepare for Thruxton.”

For Team Principal David Hayle the performance of both drivers throughout the day put the reigning champions in a strong position for success as the series heads to the ultra-fast Hampshire track.  “Both Walter and Max drove very well again today. We used the test to try out some different shock absorbers on Max’s car, from which we learnt a lot.  It was good to see Walter once again up on top and Max was only marginally slower than his team mate and just behind a lot of far more experienced drivers.

“This all bodes well for the next rounds of the series and we’ll be heading to Hampshire for qualifying next Saturday determined to repeat this performance with both drivers expected to be on the pace from the outset.”

Before track activity commences next week though, the Buckingham-based team will headline the British F3/GT Pit Shop Roadshow at The Dolphin Shopping Centre in Poole as part of the pre-event promotions for the two races. Alongside Max’s Dallara F308 Mercedes HWA will be the Avon Tyres British GT series leaders Team Trimite Brookspeed with its Dodge Viper Competition Coupe.

Max will be joined by drivers James Gornall and Jon Barnes in the centre where visitors will get the chance to get autographs and photographs of the stars and cars.

Rounds 11 and 12 of the 22-round series will kick off with first qualifying at 11.30 on Saturday 28 June and the second 30 minutes session at 15.05.  The two 30 minute races are scheduled to take place at 11.45 and 15.40 on Sunday 29 June. 

Top six times from Snetterton:

1. Walter Grubmüller Hitech Racing Dallara F308 Mercedes HWA 1min 01.09sec2. Michael Devaney Ultimate Motorsport Mygale M-08F3 1min 02.00sec3. Jaime Alguersuari Carlin Motorsport Dallara F308 Mercedes HWA 1min 02.01sec4. Marcus Ericsson Fortec Motorsport Dallara F308 Mercedes HWA 1min 02.01sec5. Sebastian Hohenthal Fortec Motorsport Dallara F308 Mercedes HWA 1min 02.01sec6. Max Chilton Hitech Racing Dallara F308 Mercedes HWA 1min 02.02sec

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