Bearman on Pole For Feature Race With Championship Leader Maloney 16th

Bearman on Pole For Feature Race With Championship Leader Maloney 16th

BEARMANPOLER

Oliver Bearman delivered pole position in a superb Qualifying session in Saudi Arabia ahead of Kush Maini.

Jak Crawford will line up third in the Feature Race ahead of Victor Martins, while the championship leader Zane Maloney will start 16th for both races.

A flurry of cars joined the circuit at the beginning of the all-important 30-minute-long Qualifying session.

In the opening minutes, the 21-car field undertook multiple warm-up laps to build temperature and pressure in the tyres and brakes.

Rafael Villagómez would not take part in the session following a crash in Practice which left his VAR needing a significant rebuild.

MP Motorsport’s Dennis Hauger set the first flying lap time of the session at 1:43.823, which Ferrari junior Bearman quickly beat.

Frenchman Victor Martins slotted into second place before Maini and Richard Verschoor beat his effort.

Franco Colapinto sat in the pit lane as his mechanics worked on the rear of his MP Motorsport as Kimi Antonelli locked up into Turn 1.

Colapinto re-joined the circuit with 20 minutes remaining in Qualifying on his first visit to the Jeddah Corniche Circuit.

American driver Crawford slotted into third place for DAMS as Dennis Hauger bested Bearman’s effort to go fastest, keeping up his form from Practice.

Martins broke into the top five, going 3 tenths of a second slower than Hauger. As the track continued to rubber in, Paul Aron moved into P2 for Hitech.

Reliability troubles struck Maloney halfway through the session as work was done on the engine of his Rodin Motorsport car.

Gabriel Bortoleto and Antonelli aborted flying laps by heading to the pit lane. 19 of the 21 cars sat in the pit lane, apart from Rodin’s Maloney and Ritomo Miyata, who attempted to improve.

With 10 minutes remaining, most of the field joined the circuit for their final attempt to snatch pole position and the two championship points available for pole.

Hauger held the fastest time at 1:42.946 ahead of Aron and Bearman as FIA F3 champion Bortoleto sat in P4.

Roman Stanek suffered a clumsy first sector to his flying lap, locking up at Turn 1 before taking provisional pole.

Aron drove to the provisional pole with 5 minutes to go before a superb effort from Bearman took the top spot by 4 tenths of a second.

Maini improved to second place ahead of Aron and Red Bull Junior Pepe Martí as Martins rounded out the top five.

The top two, separated by 0.025 of a second, were 4 tenths clear of the Estonian in third.

In the closing stages, the drivers went for another run at pole position. Antonelli improved to fifth place for PREMA moments before Martins took fourth place, usurping the Italian.

Maini locked up at the final turn before missing out on pole position, leaving Bearman to take the top spot.

Image: Joan Codina

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