Franco Colapinto ended the final day of the Jerez post-season test as the quickest man on track. Driving for MP Motorsport, the Argentinian set a 1:29.617 to end up fastest in Day 3’s first segment ahead of Oliver Goethe by 0.043s.
In the afternoon, Taylor Barnard guided his Jenzer Motorsport car to the top spot, logging a 1:31.280 in the final session of the post-season test in Spain.
With the green light at the end of the pit lane, plenty were out on track immediately and it was Zak O’Sullivan who started the day top of the times until Sebastián Montoya put in a 1:30.759 to take P1 early on. A Red Flag in the opening half an hour was thrown after Hadrien David nosed his car into the Turn 10 barriers.
Running resumed shortly after and Gabriel Bortoleto continued from where he left off on Day 2 to go fastest with a 1:29.936 before a second Red Flag followed in quick succession. This time it was Max Esterson who went off at Turn 14 to bring a halt to the session in the opening hour.
Green flags were back in the air with over two hours of the morning still remaining and Gabriele Mini and then Colapinto went fastest, a 1:29.617 putting him at the top. The third Red Flag of the morning session came just after the hour mark after Roberto Faria became beached in the gravel at Turn 5.
Pit stop practice took up much of the morning thereafter, though another Red Flag came with just over half an hour left of the morning session. Charouz Racing System’s Nicola Marinangeli beached his car in the gravel at Turn 8 to cause the stoppage. Things were back underway until a fifth Red Flag of the day came with 11 minutes to go. This time it was the #26 Carlin car of David who found the gravel at Turn 10 once more.
Colapinto ended the morning session on top with his earlier time followed by Oliver Goethe, Bortoleto, Mini and Josep María Martí, who rounded out the top five for Campos Racing.
Taylor Barnard set the early pace as the test resumed for the afternoon session. The Jenzer Motorsport #24 went to the top of the times in the opening half an hour with a 1:31.280. Martí and Hugh Barter followed at the hour mark for a Campos Racing 2-3 in what was a comparatively trouble-free opening to the session versus the morning.
Martí continued his strong performance from the first segment of the day and moved to P2 on a 1:31.489 as the Australian’s closest competitor, with Barter, Nikita Bedrin and Francesco Pizzi residing in the top five.
With no Red Flag stoppages, the majority of the session ran without incident as drivers logged the laps around Jerez at the final opportunity. Into the last hour of running, and it was Bortoleto that had been the busiest man out on track, logging 46 laps in his Trident to add to his morning’s efforts. Barter was the first to break the 50-lap barrier with just over 10 minutes left of the test.
There were no Red Flags in the afternoon, but a brief yellow was thrown to recover Brad Benavides’ ART Grand Prix car after he nosed the barriers at Turn 5 with five minutes to go.
By the chequered flag, it was O’Sullivan that was on top in the lap count stakes, recording 54 laps in his PREMA Racing #5. Barnard’s earlier time stood up as the best of the afternoon, with his 1:31.280 two-tenths quicker than closest challenger Martí.