Russell Takes Third Pole of 2017 in Wet Spa Qualifying

Credit: Alastair Staley/GP3 Series Media Service

George Russell took an excellent third pole position of the 2017 GP3 Series season after coming through a rain-affected qualifying session at Spa-Francorchamps on Friday.

The rain that affected the qualifying session for the FIA Formula 2 Championship meant that the session started in wet conditions, but the rain then ended, meaning the track conditions began to improve, and as a result the lap times tumbled.

ART Grand Prix drivers will share the front row, with Mercedes AMG Petronas Formula One Team test driver Russell’s best of 2:27.042s ending up 0.274 seconds clear of team-mate and Honda protégé Nirei Fukuzumi.

After setting a lap that saw him briefly hit the top of the time sheets, Arjun Maini, part of the Haas F1 Team’s young driver programme, took third on the grid for Jenzer Motorsport, ahead of another ART Grand Prix in Jack Aitken, while DAMS driver Matthieu Vaxiviere, racing in only his second weekend in GP3, was an excellent fifth ahead of Trident’s Dorian Boccolacci.

Boccolacci’s team-mate Ryan Tveter was seventh ahead of Arden International’s Steijn Schothorst, while Campos Racing’s Julien Falchero and DAMS’ Tatiana Calderon completed the top ten.

The tricky conditions left the grid slightly mixed up, with Alessio Lorandi and Giuliano Alesi eleventh and twelfth respectively, while ART Grand Prix’s Anthoine Hubert, currently third in the championship, was down in seventeenth.

Spa-Francorchamps Qualifying Result

13George RussellGBRART Grand Prix2:27.042
22Nirei FukuzumiJAPART Grand Prix2:27.316
324Arjun MainiINDJenzer Motorsport2:27.741
41Jack AitkenGBRART Grand Prix2:28.039
514Matthieu VaxiviereFRADAMS2:28.474
612Dorian BoccolacciFRATrident2:28.593
711Ryan TveterUSATrident2:28.814
87Steijn SchothorstNEDArden International2:28.857
926Julien FalcheroFRACampos Racing2:29.110
1015Tatiana CalderonCOLDAMS2:29.118
1122Alessio LorandiITAJenzer Motorsport2:29.267
1210Giuliano AlesiFRATrident2:29.270
139Kevin JoergSWITrident2:29.461
1428Marcos SiebertARGCampos Racing2:29.546
156Leonardo PulciniITAArden International2:29.744
165Niko KariFINArden International2:29.766
174Anthoine HubertFRAART Grand Prix2:29.882
1827Raoul HymanRSACampos Racing2:29.925
1916Bruno BaptistaBRZDAMS2:29.981
2023Juan Manuel CorreaUSAJenzer Motorsport2:30.587