In the first practice session of the 2020 FIA Formula 3 season, it was Trident driver David Beckmann who came out on top, pipping PREMA’s Oscar Piastri in a mixed 45 minutes of running.
With the track wet to start with, all the times from the opening half an hour became irrelevant as all 30 drivers set out on a mini qualifying session on slick tyres with 15 minutes to go.
Beckmann and Piastri could hardly be separated as the chequered flag fell, with the former less than a tenth clear. But they had a comfortable half a second to the rest of the field, led by Roman Stanek who was a last minute replacement for Niko Kari at Charouz.
The Czech driver was very impressive having not driven the car before and was very quick in both wet and dry conditions despite being the youngest driver on the grid having just turned 16 in February. His teammate David Schumacher was the first onto the slick Pirelli rubber and ended the session fourth ahead of Macau GP winner Richard Verschoor.
Charouz were the only team to have all three drivers in the top 10 with Brazilian Igor Fraga eighth behind Frederik Vesti and Jake Hughes. Sebastián Fernández and Liam Lawson completed the top 10.
Matteo Nannini finished the session 19th but will take solace from the fact he was top after the wet-tyre running had been complete.
It is expected that the qualifying times will look a lot different as drivers who perhaps took it easy on the slicks towards the end start to take risks. Look out for Max Fewtrell and others to be further up the grid as the weekend goes on.
|5||Richard Verschoor||MP Motorsport||1:21:129|
|7||Jake Hughes||HWA Racelab||1:21:211|
|10||Liam Lawson||Hitech GP||1:21:281|
|14||Clément Novalak||Carlin Buzz Racing||1:21:638|
|20||Cameron Das||Carlin Buzz Racing||1:22:054|
|21||Lukas Dunner||MP Motorsport||1:22:058|
|22||Max Fewtrell||Hitech GP||1:22:235|
|23||Jack Doohan||HWA Racelab||1:22:242|
|24||Dennis Hauger||Hitech GP||1:22:504|
|25||Enaam Ahmed||Carlin Buzz Racing||1:22:577|
|26||Bent Viscaal||MP Motorsport||1:22:826|
|29||Enzo Fittipaldi||HWA Racelab||1:23:360|