Wittmann Quickest in Wet Macau Practice

by Mark Foley

Signature’s Marco Wittmann set the fastest lap in Thursday morning practice ahead of the 58th Macau GP this weekend. The German F3Euroseries regular coped with rainy conditions and multiple red flag interruptions on his way to the top of the timesheets.

Early morning rain presented the drivers with a soaking track to find their feet on, early running was tentative but incident-free, until Three Bond’s Hironobu Yasuda ran wide at the notoriously tight Melco hairpin, quickly finding himself stuck and bringing out the red flags.

The restart was also short-lived, this time Felix Rosenqvist forced the session to a halt after hitting the barrier – the Swede, unaware of a small queue of cars waiting at the Melco hairpin, was too fast on approach and ditched his Dallara into the armco.

The 2nd red flag period left only 20 minutes of the session remaining, and with rain finally abating, lap-times fell as driver confidence rose.

In the last minute alone, Wittmann’s quickest time was promptly beaten by Felipe Nasr, Roberto Merhi and Daniel Juncadella. The German responded on his final effort however, finding even more grip to set the fastest lap – over 1.8 seconds ahead of Juncadella.

2011 Japanese F3 champion Yuki Sekiguchi managed the 3rd quickest time despite his limited preparation for the event, whilst Merhi and Lucas Foresti were 4th and 5th respectively.

Kevin Magnussen pipped former British F3 rival Nasr to 6th place, with Carlin team-mate Carlos Huertas behind the pair by  3 tenths. German F3 champ Richie Stanway set the 9th quickest time, with Hannes von Asseldonk rounding out the top 10 times.

Pos Driver Team/Car Time Gap
 1.  Marco Wittmann          Signature Dallara-VW       2m31.984s
 2.  Daniel Juncadella       Prema Dallara-Merc         2m33.792s  + 1.808s
 3.  Yuhi Sekiguchi          Mucke Dallara-Merc         2m34.035s  + 2.051s
 4.  Roberto Merhi           Prema Dallara-Merc         2m34.191s  + 2.207s
 5.  Lucas Foresti           Fortec Dallara-Merc        2m34.656s  + 2.672s
 6.  Kevin Magnussen         Carlin Dallara-VW          2m34.877s  + 2.893s
 7.  Felipe Nasr             Carlin Dallara-VW          2m35.372s  + 3.388s
 8.  Carlos Huertas          Carlin Dallara-VW          2m35.605s  + 3.621s
 9.  Richie Stanaway         Van Amersfoort Dallara-VW  2m36.798s  + 4.814s
10.  Hannes van Asseldonk    Hitech Dallara-VW          2m36.947s  + 4.963s

Full times: http://bit.ly/t99Ekd

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