GP3 Series: Hubert quickest overall in first pre-season test

GP3 Series: Hubert quickest overall in first pre-season test

Anthoine Hubert set an overall fastest time in the first 2018 GP3 test in the morning of the second day in a 1:48.674, as ART Grand Prix teammate Callum Ilott topped a truncated afternoon session at Le Castellet, France with a 1:49.144.

Although overcast, dry weather conditions meant that the teams could start their morning running immediately on slick Pirelli tyres. Trident was the first team to hit the track, sending out all four cars as soon as the light went green – Ryan Tveter leading the quartet onto the circuit.

The ART trio of Nikita Mazepin, Ilott and Hubert immediately set about trading best times, but after the first half an hour of running, Trident’s Alessio Lorandi sat atop the standings.

It wasn’t long until the front-running cars were lapping faster than yesterday, with Mazepin the first driver to beat the fastest Wednesday time set by Jake Hughes. Hubert was quick to displace his teammate at the top, leading the way after the first hour.

There was something of a lull approaching the midpoint of the session, but Ilott got the ball rolling once more midway through the morning’s running to break into the 1m48s bracket, holding top spot for almost an hour.

With 40 minutes of the session remaining, Hubert once more returned to head the timesheets with under a tenth in hand over Ilott. The Frenchman remained unchallenged throughout the rest of the morning, once more going into the break on top of the standings.

Ilott remained in second place, and Leonardo Pulcini (Campos Racing) broke ART’s stranglehold on the top three with a late 1:49.051 lap. Mazepin was fourth best ahead of Tatiana Calderon (Jenzer Motorsport), while yesterday’s fastest runner Hughes was sixth best ahead of Lorandi. Simo Laaksonen (Campos) was eighth ahead of MP Motorsport’s Dorian Boccolacci, while Pedro Piquet (Trident) rounded out the top 10 having completed a session high of 54 laps.

In opening 30 minutes of the afternoon session, Ilott was the first to exit the garage and followed out of the pits by Hubert. Jenzer pairing Calderon and Juan Manuel Correa were next to hit the circuit, while Boccolacci leaped to the top of the timing board. Piquet briefly led the session, before Calderon was the first of the pack to dip below the 1:50s mark in the afternoon.

Focus was once more on the longer runs across the afternoon, although newcomer David Beckmann (Jenzer) found half a tenth over teammate Calderon to lead the session at the halfway point.

ART were able to hit back, which allowed Ilott and Hubert to trade fastest laps before the conditions worsened. With an hour of the session left, a smattering of drizzle relegated most of the teams back into the pits, with Ilott ending the afternoon’s dry running with the best time after the break.

The rain briefly worsened, with new team MP Motorsport using the opportunity to send Boccolacci, Niko Kari and Leonard Hoogenboom out for some wet running. The majority of drivers followed suit, but Ilott’s time was left untouched for the final hour. Hubert’s time of 1:49.193 was enough for second, as Calderon, Piquet and Hughes completed the top five.Beckmann was sixth ahead of Tveter, as Mazepin, Diego Menchaca (Campos) and Lorandi finished inside the top 10.

This concluded the opening pre-season tests of the 2018 season. The GP3 paddock will gather next at Jerez de la Frontera, Spain on March 14-15.

Day 2 morning session times

Driver
Team
Time
Laps
1
Anthoine Hubert
ART Grand Prix
1:48.674
37
2
Callum Ilott
ART Grand Prix
1:48.761
41
3
Leonardo Pulcini
Campos Racing
1:49.051
37
4
Nikita Mazepin
ART Grand Prix
1:49.180
37
5
Tatiana Calderon
Jenzer Motorsport
1:49.209
38
6
Jake Hughes
ART Grand Prix
1:49.326
31
7
Alessio Lorandi
Trident
1:49.434
53
8
Simo Laaksonen
Campos Racing
1:49.643
37
9
Dorian Boccolacci
MP Motorsport
1:49.721
28
10
Pedro Piquet
Trident
1:49.729
54
11
Julien Falchero
Arden International
1:49.760
40
12
Niko Kari
MP Motorsport
1:49.777
29
13
Giuliano Alesi
Trident
1:49.861
35
14
Ryan Tveter
Trident
1:49.892
48
15
Juan Manuel Correa
Jenzer Motorsport
1:49.902
45
16
Gabriel Aubry
Arden International
1:49.969
35
17
Diego Menchaca
Campos Racing
1.50.017
25
18
David Beckmann
Jenzer Motorsport
1:50.096
45
19
Joey Mawson
Arden International
1:50.146
39
20
Leonard Hoogenboom
MP Motorsport
1:51.132
24
 
Day 2 afternoon session times
Driver
Team
Time
Laps
1
Callum Ilott
ART Grand Prix
1:49.144
43
2
Anthoine Hubert
ART Grand Prix
1:49.193
40
3
Tatiana Calderon
Jenzer Motorsport
1:49.684
21
4
Pedro Piquet
Trident
1:49.687
32
5
Jake Hughes
ART Grand Prix
1:49.750
37
6
David Beckmann
Jenzer Motorsport
1:49.928
19
7
Ryan Tveter
Trident
1:50.038
18
8
Nikita Mazepin
ART Grand Prix
1:50.039
37
9
Diego Menchaca
Campos Racing
1:50.173
26
10
Alessio Lorandi
Trident
1:50.260
16
11
Niko Kari
MP Motorsport
1:50.312
30
12
Joey Mawson
Arden International
1:50.362
18
13
Gabriel Aubry
Arden International
1:50.379
21
14
Leonardo Pulcini
Campos Racing
1:50.424
11
15
Dorian Boccolacci
MP Motorsport
1:50.616
20
16
Simo Laaksonen
Campos Racing
1:50.623
7
17
Giuliano Alesi
Trident
1:50.671
19
18
JM Correa
Jenzer Motorsport
1:50.718
26
19
Leonard Hoogenboom
MP Motorsport
1:51.680
26
20
Julien Falchero
Arden International
2:10.444
8