Guan Yu Zhou was delighted to take his maiden FIA European Formula 3 Championship pole position on Friday as he took top spot for race one at Zandvoort at the head of a quartet of Prema Theodore Racing drivers.
The Chinese driver set a best time of 1:28.861s to hit the front, with Zhou ending up ahead of team-mates Ralf Aron, Mick Schumacher and Marcus Armstrong as Prema locked out the front two rows of the grid for the opening race of the weekend.
“Obviously I’m super delighted for P1 in qualifying 1, my first pole position in Formula 3,” said Zhou. “The team did a super job from the beginning of the weekend.
“I just managed to put a mega lap together and secure pole, on a track where it’s really important to qualify well.”
Zhou admitted the second session was a mess thanks to the yellow and red flags that interrupted quick laps, as well as gravel on the track at the chicane. He will line-up sixth on the grid for race two but was the only Prema driver to qualify inside the top ten for race three, where he will start fourth.
“Qualifying 2 was a bit of a mess,” admitted the Chinese driver. “I did only one proper push lap with new tyres. Then we got yellow flags, red flags, people going off, gravel on track…
“Luckily the second best wasn’t bad and got me P4 for race 3. We didn’t show our full potential, but it was mostly a matter of luck.”