Carlin driver Jazeman Jaafar took an important psychological victory, pacing the final day of pre-season testing for the British Formula Three International Series.
With only a week remaining until the F3 season sparks into life at Oulton Park on Saturday April 7 the class of 2012 got one last chance to hone their new Dallara F312 chassis on the Cheshire track today (March 28).
Jaafar's best time came in the day's morning session, his lap of 1:28.451 several tenths faster than his Carlin teammates Harry Tincknell and Jack Harvey, both of who continue to show pace in preparations for the second season on the British F3 grid. Series newcomer Carlos Sainz – so often the pace setter this pre-season was fourth fastest on the day, with Alex Lynn the best driver from the Fortec Motorsport stable.
Lynn was of few drivers to improve his time in the afternoon session, lowering his best effort by half a second. “This morning's session was definitely quicker than this afternoon's,” Lynn recognised, “but we were not concentrating on setting quick times at that stage and were concentrating on completing our test programme. This afternoon we went for it, and by the end there was nothing in it at all, so we're very happy with where we are and confident for the race next week.”
Sainz, meanwhile had quite a different afternoon session, the Red Bull junior only completing 10 laps after an off, following Pietro Fantin's crash at Old Hall in the morning.
Racing Steps Foundation driver Harvey was the best of the bunch in the afternoon, though his 1:28.945 was a half second adrift of the morning pace, though he admitted he could have gone faster; a mistake on new tyres cost him a fast lap, leaving his best lap on older rubber as afternoon's top time.
Spike Goddard was the best of the two man National Class, the T-Sport driver lining up against fellow Australian Duvashen Padayachee's Double R car