GP2 Series

Crestani Masters Soaked Silverstone In GP2 Practice

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Fabrizio Crestani - Photo Credit: Jakob Ebrey/GP2 Media Service

Conditions at Silverstone were treacherous at best for the GP2 practice session, which saw three red flags. The last of those brought an early end to the 30 minute session, with Fabrizio Crestani seemingly having mastered the conditions to set a time 1.1 seconds faster than anyone else.

The Lazarus driver set the pace early on in the session, and although Esteban Gutierrez took top spot for a while, Crestani returned to P1 before the session was ended.

Making his return at Rapax this weekend after missing Valencia due to illness, Ricardo Teixeira was the first man to bring out the red flags in the opening ten minutes of the session after he spun coming on to the start-finish straight and stalled.

His teammate Daniel De Jong had already been off exiting Chapel, while James Calado had spun after running across the kerb on the inside of the corner at the start of the Wellington Straight.

Fabio Onidi caused the second stoppage with ten minutes to go after he had spun at the very same point as Calado. The Italian had however stalled his car as he tried not to roll back in front of other cars.

With just over four minutes remaining Victor Guerin spun coming onto the start-finish straight as another car wobbled and ran wide ahead of him. Although he managed to get going again, the red flags had already come out and the decision was taken not to restart the session.

Gutierrez finished up second quickest, with Max Chilton third and more than two seconds off the pace. Fellow Brit Calado was fourth ahead of Nigel Melker and Julian Leal.

Felipe Nasr was three seconds adrift in seventh, with Rio Haryanto eighth. Luiz Razia, who comes in to the weekend just a point off the championship lead, was ninth, with Fabio Leimer tenth.

Johnny Cecotto was another to spin, on his way to 11th. Marcus Ericsson was 12th, with standings leader Davide Valsecchi 13th and 5.6 seconds slower than Crestani.

Nathanael Berthon, Jolyon Palmer and Guerin were next, ahead of Simon Trummer, De Jong and Onidi. Stephane Richelmi was 20st, Stephane Richelmi 21st and Josef Kral 22nd.

Stefano Coletti did not complete a timed lap, like Teixeira. The Caterham boys propped up the timesheets – Giedo van der Garde opting not to set a lap time while Rodolfo Gonzalez found the gravel trap on his way out of the pits for the first time.

Most will hope the conditions have improved come qualifying at 16:00 BST.

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Peter joined the TCF team in September 2010 and covers GP2 and GP3 along with WTCC and Formula Two. You can find him on twitter at @PeteAllen_
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