FIA Formula 3: Leclerc tops Free Practice session in Austria

Feature Image Credit: PREMA Team Instagram

PREMA Racing’s Arthur Leclerc leads the session opener, setting the fastest time to 1:20.171 to be just a tenth down quicker than MP Motorsport’s Alexander Smolyar in a slippery Spielberg session.

The Monegasque became the first driver to switch over slicks to explore where the grip was after an overnight shower around the Red Bull Ring that resulted in a wet session. 

After a handful of drivers were taking turns of the lead from the session, Leclerc stormed off to the top of the leaderboard in the final minutes of Free Practice, as the Monegasque became the first driver to switch over slicks.

Smolyar had to settle for second only 0.133s shy of Leclerc’s time, as Trident’s Jonny Edgar put on a remarkable performance for third after his return in Silverstone ahead of fellow Red Bull Juniors Isack Hadjar in fourth.

ART Grand Prix’s Gregoire Saucy made it to the fifth-fastest in his best Formula 3 Free Practice result so far, ahead of Roman Stanek in the second Trident car. 

Oliver Bearman completed the session in seventh for PREMA, beating the Championship leader Victor Martins in eighth fastest for ART Grand Prix. Franco Colapinto placed his Van Amersfoort Racing in ninth, as Hitech’s Kaylen Frederick rounded out the top 10.

The 30-strong grid will return to action at 15:00 local times to determine Sunday’s Feature Race starting grid in qualifying. Last time out, the series’ reigning champion Dennis Hauger took the pole position in Spielberg but failed to convert his position to victory as Frederik Vesti stormed into the lead from second.

Free Practice results:

1 Arthur Leclerc PREMA Racing 1:20.171
2 Alexander Smolyar MP Motorsport 1:20.284
3 Jonny Edgar Trident 1:20.322
4 Isack Hadjar Hitech Grand Prix 1:20.370
5 Gregoire Saucy ART Grand Prix 1:20.389
6 Roman Stanek Trident 1:20.395
7 Oliver Bearman PREMA Racing 1:20.420
8 Victor Martins ART Grand Prix 1:20.521
9 Franco Colapinto Van Amersfoort Racing 1:20.586
10 Kaylen Frederick Hitech Grand Prix 1:20.595
11 Caio Collet MP Motorsport 1:20.615
12 Zak O’Sullivan Carlin 1:20.651
13 Zane Maloney Trident 1:20.771
14 Rafael Villagomez Van Amersfoort Racing 1:20.818
15 Juan Maria Marti Campos Racing 1:20.835
16 Francesco Pizzi Charouz Racing System 1:20.912
17 Jak Crawford PREMA Racing 1:20.918
18 Juan Manuel Correa ART Grand Prix 1:20.941
19 Kush Maini MP Motorsport 1:20.942
20 Enzo Trulli Carlin 1:20.957
21 Ido Cohen Jenzer Motorsport 1:21.051
22 William Alatalo Jenzer Motorsport 1:21.162
23 Brad Benavides Carlin 1:21.276
24 Hunter Yeany Campos Racing 1:21.408
25 Zdenek Chovanec Charouz Racing System 1:21.441
26 David Vidales Campos Racing 1:21.464
27 Federico Malvestiti Jenzer Motorsport 1:21.768
28 Laszlo Toth Charouz Racing System 1:21.976
29 Nazim Azman Hitech Grand Prix 1:22.019
30 Reece Ushijima Van Amersfoort Racing 1:29.589


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