Gasly secures Maiden FR3.5 Pole at Paul Ricard

Pierre Gasly took his first pole position of his Formula Renault 3.5 Series career for race two at Paul Ricard as Red Bull Junior drivers locked out the front row for the second day running.

The Arden Motorsport driver set a best lap time of 1:47.655s towards the end of the session to beat his fellow Red Bull Junior driver Carlos Sainz Jr of DAMS whose final lap was stopped by red flags after Zoel Amberg crashed his AV Formula machine with twenty-three seconds remaining on the clock.

Sainz was one of a number of drivers to lose the chance of improving his time due to the red flag, with both Fortec Motorsports drivers on better laps as well. Sergey Sirotkin could have challenged for pole position himself but would have to be happy with third on the grid, while Oliver Rowland will start eighth.

ISR Racing’s Jazeman Jaafar, who will be hoping to get further in the race today after crashing out on the opening lap on Saturday, will join Sirotkin on the second row of the grid.

Roberto Merhi, who needs a good result to try and take the championship battle with Sainz Jr to the final event in Jerez in three weeks time, will start fifth for Zeta Corse, just ahead of the two Lotus drivers of Matthieu Vaxiviere and Marlon Stockinger.

Behind Rowland in eighth is the second DAMS machine of Norman Nato and the leading Comtec Racing machine of current FIA European Formula 3 Championship leader Esteban Ocon.

Paul Ricard Race 2 Qualifying Result

1 Pierre Gasly FRA Arden Motorsport 1:47.655
2 Carlos Sainz Jr ESP DAMS 1:47.725
3 Sergey Sirotkin RUS Fortec Motorsports 1:47.731
4 Jazeman Jaafar MAL ISR 1:47.913
5 Roberto Merhi ESP Zeta Corse 1:48.022
6 Matthieu Vaxiviere FRA Lotus 1:48.042
7 Marlon Stockinger PHI Lotus 1:48.056
8 Oliver Rowland GBR Fortec Motorsports 1:48.186
9 Norman Nato FRA DAMS 1:48.202
10 Esteban Ocon FRA Comtec Racing 1:48.287
11 Will Stevens GBR Strakka Racing 1:48.290
12 Luca Ghiotto ITA International Draco Racing 1:48.454
13 Matias Lainé FIN Strakka Racing 1:48.541
14 Pietro Fantin BRZ International Draco Racing 1:48.609
15 Oscar Tunjo COL Pons Racing 1:48.615
16 William Buller GBR Arden Motorsport 1:48.619
17 Marco Sorensen DEN Tech 1 Racing 1:48.654
18 Nicholas Latifi CAN Tech 1 Racing 1:49.019
19 Beitske Visser NED AV Formula 1:49.156
20 Cameron Twynham GBR Comtec Racing 1:49.416
21 Meindert van Buuren NED Pons Racing 1:50.052
22 Zoel Amberg SWI AV Formula 1:50.733