Frenchman quickest in Day 2 of testing at Yas Marina
The second day of post season testing at Yas Marina Circuit saw a slightly different entry list than the previous day: first, Norman Nato moved to RT RUSSIAN TIME whilst 2014 GP3 Series Champion Alex Lynn had his first taste of GP2 at the wheel of the Carlin car. Jazeman Jaafar switched to Racing Engineering alongside Simon Trummer. Thai driver Sandy Stuvik tested with ART Grand Prix in car #10 whilst Nicholas Latifi and Emil Bernstorff both moved to Hilmer Motorsport. Rapax tested with Kevin Ceccon and Sergey Sirotkin. GP3 racer Dino Zamparelli partnered Raffaele Marciello at Status Grand Prix. For the first time ever at an official GP2 test, a female driver appeared in the field as Dutch Beitske Visser paired up with Nathanaël Berthon at Venezuela GP Lazarus. Finally, Rio Haryanto joined Campos Racing for the day.
The morning session opened and the twenty-six cars fed onto the track. Once again, it was Campos’ Arthur Pic who set the early pace in a 1:49.645. His time – set within the first 30 minutes of the session - was never bettered until the chequered flag dropped. It was a studious and trouble-free session except for a first brief red flag period in the final hour to pick up some debris left on the track. With five minutes left on the clock, the proceedings were halted again after Nato stopped at the top of the straight. The session was not re-started and Pic enjoyed the top of the timesheet ahead of Jordan King, Esteban Ocon, Haryanto, Berthon, Pierre Gasly, Rene Binder, Marciello, Lynn and Julian Leal.
The afternoon session saw a driver change at ART with Nobuharu Matsushita replacing Koudai Tsukakoshi in car #09. It was Haryanto who set the pace before an early red flag period interrupted the proceedings: Sergey Sirotkin went off at Turn 1 and made contact with the barrier at Turn 1. The Russian was unharmed, but his Rapax machine was badly damaged and Sirotkin had to sit out the rest of the session.
When the track was live again, Gasly moved up to P2, just a few hundredths off Haryanto's time. On his next attempt, the Frenchman from DAMS went top, but Marciello went even quicker by 2 hundredths. Times kept on tumbling down, with Pic going P1 in a 1:49.204, however rookie Ocon went even quicker with a 1:49.048 to snatch the top spot. Halfway through the session, Gasly also found some extra pace to dip under 1m49s and sat pretty at the top until the chequered flag dropped, and for the second day in a row the DAMS driver ended the day as the quickest man on track. Behind Gasly, Ocon, Pic, Marciello, Binder, Jordan King, Daniel De Jong, Haryanto, Artem Markelov rounded up the top ten.
The final day of post season testing will take place today and will start at 12.00pm local time.