An incredibly tense and close FIA Formula 3 qualifying session at Mugello saw Lirim Zendeli take his second pole in three races while championship leader Oscar Piastri was only eleventh quickest.
The German Zendeli was in the top six after the first runs of the final qualifying of 2020 but he gathered his thoughts and produced the goods on his final run to edge out Logan Sargeant.
Sargeant was only four hundredths of a second off Zendeli’s pole time despite complaining of a very tail-happy car. However a three-place grid penalty from Monza will see the American start fifth.
There is also grid penalties for Piastri but his drop him all the way to sixteenth and behind all of the challengers. Sargeant will now be considered title favourite, providing he can keep his nose clean.
Jake Hughes will therefore join Zendeli on the front row having topped the morning’s practice session. He was on a very quick lap right at the end of the session but the lap time fell away in the final sector.
Frederik Vesti will start third but will be ruing a mistake on his first flying lap which saw him dip a wheel into the gravel at turn five. He is joined by Enzo Fittipaldi on row two as the Brazilian finally got his qualifying sorted for the final round.
Sebastián Fernández, who took the first pole of the year, was sixth fastest ahead of his ART teammate and third in the championship Théo Pourchaire who needs a big result tomorrow to keep his title hopes alive.
David Beckmann was fastest after the first runs but he was unable to find the same kind of improvement that his teammate found and was forced to settle for eight ahead of Dennis Hauger and Aleksandr Smolyar.
|3||Jake Hughes||HWA Racelab||1:35:453|
|5||Enzo Fittipaldi||HWA Racelab||1:35:561|
|9||Dennis Hauger||Hitech GP||1:35:682|
|12||Jack Doohan||HWA Racelab||1:35:941|
|13||Liam Lawson||Hitech GP||1:35:999|
|14||Richard Verschoor||MP Motorsport||1:36:043|
|19||Bent Viscaal||MP Motorsport||1:36:231|
|22||Lukas Dunner||MP Motorsport||1:36:477|