Carlin's Alex Lynn takes GP3 pole position in Austria to extend championship lead
Just one second separates top 21 drivers in tight session
Last Updated: 21/06/14 12:00pm
Alex Lynn: On pole in Austria (GP3 Series Media)
Alex Lynn took pole position for the opening GP3 race in Austria in a tight session where only one second separated the top 21 drivers.
The Briton is part of the Red Bull Junior programme and thus will have given his bosses plenty to smile about at their home race.
The thirty minute shoot-out for pole position was run in cool temperatures but dry conditions with Richie Stanaway (Status Grand Prix) leading the way. After ten minutes it was Lynn at the head of the timesheet with Dean Stoneman lapping just 0.026s shy off his fellow countryman.
A few moments later Stoneman had an excursion into the gravel on his hot lap and was very lucky to avoid making contact with the barrier and was able continue with his session. At the midway point Lynn led Stoneman, Matheo Tuscher, Marvin Kirchhofer and Stanaway.
The drivers returned to the pits for a new set of Pirelli tyres for their next attempt to fight for the elusive pole position and the vital four points assigned to it. Kirchhofer and Patrick Kujala (Marussia Manor Racing) both snuck up to P1, whilst Lynn on his best attempt to date was caught behind traffic and unable to improve.
Kujala bettered his own time and held provisional pole for a short time as the times tumbled in the dying moments. Fontana grabbed P1 but Lynn was on a mission and set the fastest time of the session with a 1:20.585. At the chequered flag Lynn held the coveted pole whilst Stoneman and Fontana both achieved their best ever grid positions in the category.
Emil Bernstorff, Kujala, Jimmy Eriksson, Kirchhöfer, Stanaway, Nick Yelloly and Luis Sa Silva completed the top ten. All three Carlin drivers qualified in the first ten with a personal best qualifying for the Angolan driver Sa Silva.
The opening GP3 race of the weekend is live on Saturday from 4:15pm on Sky Sports F1.
GP3 Qualifying - Austria
1) Alex Lynn (GBR) – Carlin - 1:20.585
2) Alex Fontana (SUI) - ART Grand Prix - +0.023
3) Dean Stoneman (GBR) - Marussia Manor Racing – +0.079
4) Emil Bernstorff (GBR) – Carlin - +0.108
5) Patrick Kujala (FIN) - Marussia Manor Racing - +0.159
6) Jimmy Eriksson (SWE) - Koiranen GP - +0.212
7) Marvin Kirchhofer (GER) - ART Grand Prix - +0.278
8) Richie Stanaway (NZL) - Status Grand Prix - +0.389
9) Nick Yelloly (GBR)- Status Grand Prix - +0.486
10) Luis Sa Silva (MAC) – Carlin - +0.557