Gabriele Mini and Kaylen Frederick were the fastest drivers on Day 1 of the Formula 3 post-season test at Jerez.
Mini ended the opening session of the post-season Jerez test fastest of all for Hitech Grand Prix. The Italian, driving in Formula Regional European Championship in 2022, was quickest on a 1:30.500 on his opening morning of Formula 3 action. His time was the fastest of the day.
Frederick was the quickest in the afternoon, setting a 1:31.275 for ART Grand Prix to go top in the final hour of Day 1.
Mini was the fastest in the opening hour, setting a 1:31.217 to head the field ahead of Sebastián Montoya. The Colombian returned with Hitech Grand Prix after his appearance at Zandvoort with Campos Racing during the 2022 season and was 0.067s off the top spot in the early stages.
Josep María Martí then took over at the top of the timing sheets early on in the second hour, becoming the first to dip below the 1:31’s. His 1:30.957 was beaten by Frederick in the ART and then Mini once again. The Italian put himself back into P1 with just over an hour remaining of the opening session of the test with a 1:30.500.
Frederick was the first driver to trigger a Red Flag, taking a trip through the gravel at Turn 6. Mini’s strong start came somewhat undone too with the clock just over the hour-to-go mark. A second Red Flag was thrown after he found the barriers at Turn 10. A brief delay while the car was cleared ended with 50 minutes of the morning session remaining.
Familiar names popped up towards the top in the remaining time, with Frederick and Martí completing the top three ahead of Zak O’Sullivan, driving for PREMA Racing, and Reece Ushijima, in Hitech colours for the test.
The next Red Flag came with 10 minutes to go as Montoya found the same barriers at Turn 10 as Mini before. With six minutes left, the session went back to green though there were no more meaningful improvements.
Oliver Goethe opened the afternoon session by going fastest. The Monégasque swapped Campos colours for Trident following his two-race appearance at Budapest and Spa-Francorchamps in-season and wasted no time getting up to speed again, setting a 1:31.749 to go fastest.
Gabriel Bortoleto made it a Trident 1-2 in the opening half an hour before the first Red Flag of the afternoon paused running. Roberto Faria found the gravel between Turns 8 and 9 and beached his Van Amersfoort Racing car.
Running resumed with two hours remaining and Martí continued his strong showing from the morning session to jump up to P3 on a 1:32.099. At the halfway point in the afternoon session, Goethe led from Bortoleto, Marti, Francesco Pizzi in his Campos car and Leonardo Fornaroli in the third Trident.
Another Red Flag for an incident at Turn 10 was thrown, this time for Emerson Fittipaldi in the #14 Charouz Racing System. It was quickly cleared and running resumed with just over an hour and 20 minutes left of Day 1.
After the resumption, O’Sullivan was the next to go quickest, setting a 1:31.669 to take his PREMA to the top of the times. Paul Aron jumped up to fourth in the #4 PREMA before another Red Flag was out. Hunter Yeany went deep at Turn 10 in his Carlin, but he avoided the barriers, instead becoming stuck in the gravel.
In the final hour of running, Dino Beganovic usurped O’Sullivan to put the final PREMA car inside the top five, going fastest with a 1:31.358. Another to pop back up in the times, Frederick went back to the top in his ART in the final 30 minutes. The American’s 1:31.275 put him just under a tenth clear. Two more familiar names followed suit, with Grégoire Saucy and Rafael Villagómez going third and fourth respectively with time ticking down.
With just over five minutes left of Day 1, the Red Flags returned as Alessandro Famularo was the next off at Turn 10. With so little time left on the clock, running didn’t resume before the chequered flag.
The test resumes tomorrow at 9AM local time.