Vaxiviere secures SMP Racing’s maiden pole at Spa

Matthieu Vaxiviere - Credit: Diederik van der Laan / Dutch Photo Agency / LAT Photographic

Matthieu Vaxiviere returned to the front of the field by taking pole position for race one at Spa-Francorchamps, and in doing so gave SMP Racing their first pole since joining the Formula V8 3.5 series grid at the beginning of the season.

A number of drivers sat on top of the time sheets during the session, but ultimately it was Vaxiviere who ended up fastest with a time of 1m58.226s, 0.143s faster than fellow Frenchman Aurélien Panis of Arden Motorsport.

Times had tumbled following a mid-session interruption when Gentleman driver Giuseppe Cipriani crashed his Durango Racing Team machine at the Bus Stop chicane, causing a red flag, with Egor Orudzhev at the top of the times at that point.

When the session resumed, Orudzhev found himself unable to improve enough to continue at the top, ultimately finishing third in the second Arden entry, while Rene Binder confirmed his Friday pace, where he was fastest in the collective tests, with the fourth fastest time for Lotus.

Tom Dillmann will start fifth for AVF ahead of Renault Sport Academy driver Louis Deletraz of Fortec Motorsports, while Yu Kanamaru was seventh for Teo Martin Motorsport.

Roy Nissany will start eighth in the second of the Charouz-run Lotus cars, with Johnny Cecotto Jr ninth for RP Motorsport, while Alfonso Celis Jr completed the top ten for AVF.

Spa-Francorchamps Race 1 Qualifying Times

123Matthieu VaxiviereFRASMP Racing1m58.226s
28Aurelien PanisFRAArden Motorsport1m58.369s
37Egor OrudzhevRUSArden Motorsport1m58.505s
43Rene BinderAUTLotus1m58.737s
516Tom DillmannFRAAVF1m58.799s
61Louis DeletrazSWIFortec Motorsports1m58.924s
725Yu KanamaruJAPTeo Martin Motorsport1m59.047s
84Roy NissanyISRLotus1m59.097s
921Johnny Cecotto JrVENRP Motorsport1m59.293s
1015Alfonso Celis JrMEXAVF1m59.601s
1126Matevos IsaakyanRUSSMP Racing1m59.642s
122Pietro FittipaldiBRZFortec Motorsports1m59.700s
1322Vitor BaptistaBRZRP Motorsport1m59.929s
146Beitske VisserNEDTeo Martin Motorsport2m00.398s
1520Giuseppe CiprianiITADurango Racing Team2m04.691s