Leclerc claims maiden GP3 pole in Spielberg

Charles Leclerc (FRA, ART Grand Prix) gets pole position at the Austrian Grand Prix 2016 GP3 Series Round 2 Red Bull Ring, Spielberg, Austria. Saturday 2 July 2016. Photo: Sam Bloxham/GP3 Series Media Service. ref: Digital Image _SLA7977

Monegasque driver Charles Leclerc claimed his maiden GP3 Series pole position, after lapping the track in a time of 1m19.041s – over half a second quicker than his teammate Alexander Albon. Dutchman Nyck de Vries took third on the grid, to join his ART Grand Prix teammates.

De Vries quickly claimed P1 early into the session but was soon beaten by Leclerc who lapped into the 1m19s to go fastest. Their teammate Albon soon found extra pace to lap one tenth shy of the Monegasque driver.

As the session reached its midway point, the drivers took to the pitlane to switch to fresh Pirelli rubber.

When they returned to track, Nirei Fukuzumi soon jumped up to P2 just 0.003s off of Leclerc’s fastest time – meaning ART held the first four positions on the grid. The battle for pole raged on as Leclerc and Albon fought intensely swapping P1 a number of times in the final minutes.

However, it was Leclerc who ultimately who claimed the top spot. Albon, pushed on but his best effort but him half second shy of his teammate and Series leader. As the clock ticked down, Koiranen GP‘s Ralph Boschung took over in fourth place demoting Fukuzumi to fifth.

At the chequered flag, Leclerc claimed his maiden pole position, ahead of teammates Albon and de Vries. Boschung, Fukuzumi, Matthew ParryOscar TunjoJake DennisJake Hughes and Santino Ferrucci completed the top ten.

2016 GP3 Series Austria Race 1 Results

11Charles LeclercMONART Grand Prix1m19.041
23Alexander AlbonTHAART Grand Prix1m19.567
34Nyck de Vries NEDART Grand Prix1m19.734
417Ralph Boschung SUIKoiranen GP1m19.775
52Nirei FukuzumiJPNART Grand Prix1m19.842
614Matthew ParryGBRKoiranen GP1m19.868
720Oscar TunjoCOLJenzer Motorsport1m19.878
89Jake DennisGBRArden International1m19.917
927Jake HughesGBRDAMS 1m19.925
1026Santino FerrucciUSADAMS 1m19.980
115Antonio FuocoITATrident1m20.080
128Sandy StuvikTHATrident1m20.102
1310Tatiana CalderonCOLArden International1m20.104
146Artur JanoszPOLTrident1m20.126
1511Jack AitkenGBRArden International1m20.227
1616Matevos IsaakyanRUSKoiranen GP1m20.294
1722Alex PalouESPCampos Racing1m20.309
1823Steijn Schothorst NEDCampos Racing1m20.378
1928Kevin JörgSUIDAMS 1m20.429
2019Richard GondaSVKJenzer Motorsport1m20.579
2118Akash NandyMASJenzer Motorsport1m20.593
2224Konstantin TereschenkoRUSCampos Racing1m20.651