Norris Heads Russell to Take First Formula 2 Pole in Bahrain

Lando Norris took pole position in Bahrain
Credit: Zak Mauger/LAT Images

Lando Norris secured a superb maiden FIA Formula 2 Championship pole position at the Bahrain International Circuit, with the Briton giving Carlin a perfect present for their debut in the series.

The 2017 FIA European Formula 3 Champion clinched top spot by denying last years GP3 Series champion George Russell by 0.062 seconds, with his best lap of 1:41.761s coming with a little over three minutes remaining.

ART Grand Prix’s Russell had led the early stages despite his first quick lap being compromised by running wide at the final turn, and despite improving by half a second, could not deny Norris top spot.

DAMSAlexander Albon, a late addition to the Bahrain weekend, will start third on the grid, with the Thai driver ending just 0.089 seconds off the pole position lap of Norris, while Nyck de Vries will also start his first race with Pertamina Prema Theodore Racing on the second row of the grid.

Louis Delétraz gave the Charouz Racing System a great debut by putting his Dallara fifth overall, confirming that his impressive pre-season pace was true, while the Swiss racer will be joined on the third row of the grid by the second Carlin of Sergio Sette Camara.

Nirei Fukuzumi was another debutant to have an impressive first Qualifying session, with the BWT Arden driver set to start seventh ahead of fellow Japanese racer Tadasuke Makino of Russian Time, while ART Grand Prix’s Jack Aitken and BWT Arden’s Maximilian Gunther completed the top ten.

Two of the pre-season favourites, Nicholas Latifi and Artem Markelov, struggled, and will start Saturday’s Feature race from fifteenth and seventeenth on the grid respectively, although the latter was only 1.055 seconds off the pace, while the whole field was covered by just over one and a half seconds.

Bahrain International Circuit Qualifying Result

119Lando NorrisGBRCarlin1:41.761
28George RussellGBRART Grand Prix1:41.823
35Alexander AlbonTHADAMS1:41.850
44Nyck de VriesNEDPertamina Prema Theodore Racing1:41.880
520Louis DeletrazSWICharouz Racing System1:42.174
618Sergio Sette CamaraBRZCarlin1:42.221
712Nirei FukuzumiJAPBWT Arden1:42.246
82Tadasuke MakinoJAPRussian Time1:42.264
97Jack AitkenGBRART Grand Prix1:42.282
1011Maximilian GuntherGERBWT Arden1:42.336
1121Antonio FuocoITACharouz Racing System1:42.342
1214Luca GhiottoITACampos Vexatec Racing1:42.414
139Roberto MerhiESPMP Motorsport1:42.423
1416Arjun MainiINDTrident1:42.437
156Nicholas LatifiCANDAMS1:42.447
1610Ralph BoschungSWIMP Motorsport1:42.460
171Artem MarkelovRUSRussian Time1:42.816
1817Santino FerrucciUSATrident1:42.818
193Sean GelaelINOPertamina Prema Theodore Racing1:43.016
2015Roy NissanyISRCampos Vexatec Racing1:43.350