Felix da Costa leads the way in disrupted opening Macau Qualifying

Antonio Felix da Costa - Credit: DTM Series

Antonio Felix da Costa is on provisional pole position for the qualifying race around the streets of Macau after coming out on top of a heavily disrupted first qualifying session on Thursday.

The Portuguese driver, who is returning to the event this year as part of a four-car assault by Carlin, set the best time of the session with twelve minutes remaining, with no fewer than four red flags causing disruptions.

Van Amersfoort Racing’s Callum Ilott was second fastest, 0.226 seconds down on Felix da Costa, while defending Macau Grand Prix winner Felix Rosenqvist was third for SJM Theodore Racing by Prema. Rosenqvist had earlier in the day set the fastest time during free practice as he attacks his first Formula 3 event of 2016.

Rosenqvist and fourth placed Kenta Yamashita of ThreeBond with T-Sport set the exact same time during the session, but as the Swede set his time first, he gets the benefit of sitting ahead on the provisional grid at this time.

Yamashita was the cause of the first red flag when he lost a wheel in the early stages of the session, with the stoppage allowing it to be recovered, while a briefly stranded car in the middle of the track just before Lisboa caused the second stoppage.

A pair of crashes for Lando Norris at San Francisco and Joel Eriksson at the Solitude Esses caused the third stoppage, while Daniel Juncadella was the cause of the session-ending final red flag with just two minutes to go when he crashed at Fisherman’s.

Juncadella had set the fifth fastest time for Hitech GP before that, with Sergio Sette Câmara was sixth for Carlin ahead of team-mate Norris, while Nick Cassidy, Jake Hughes and Sam MacLeod completed the top ten.

Macau Grand Prix Qualifying 1 Result

129Antonio Felix da CostaPORCarlin2:11.5
220Callum IlottGBRVan Amersfoort Racing2:11.8
31Felix RosenqvistSWESJM Theodore Racing by Prema2:11.8
411Kenta YamashitaJAPThreeBond with T-Sport2:11.8
59Daniel JuncadellaESPHitech GP2:11.8
627Sergio Sette CamaraBRZCarlin2:12.0
726Lando NorrisGBRCarlin2:12.0
83Nick CassidyNZLSJM Theodore Racing by Prema2:12.1
928Jake HughesGBRCarlin2:12.4
1032Sam MacLeodGBRFortec Motorsport2:12.5
1130Alexander SimsGBRDouble R Racing2:12.6
1217Arjun MainiINDMotopark2:12.7
138George RussellGBRHitech GP2:12.7
1421Anthoine HubertFRAVan Amersfoort Racing2:12.7
152Maximilian GuntherGERSJM Theodore Racing by Prema2:13.0
1631Daniel TicktumGBRDouble R Racing2:13.1
1722Pedro PiquetBRZVan Amersfoort Racing2:13.3
1812Wing Chung ChangMACThreeBond with T-Sport2:13.3
1910Nikita MazepinRUSHitech GP2:13.4
2016Joel ErikssonSWEMotopark2:13.5
217Hongli YeCHNB-Max Racing Team2:14.0
2223David BeckmannGERMucke Motorsport2:14.1
235Jann MardenboroughGBRB-Max Racing Team2:14.2
2418Guanyu ZhouCHNMotopark2:14.3
2525Keyvan AndresGERMucke Motorsport2:14.8
2615Sho TsuboiJAPTeam TOM's2:15.1
276Daiki SasakiJAPB-Max Racing Team2:15.3
2833Ferdinand HabsburgAUTFortec Motorsport2:15.3
2919Tadasuke MakinoJAPToda Racing2:15.6