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Another good day

20.04.2011 Pål Varhaug has just finished two good test days in Barcelona. He was among the front runners all day, and ended P16 at the end of the day. -I’m very satisfied with my speed, but I was blocked by another car when I was on the new set of tyres. On the long stint I also had some very good lap times, so this looks good for the season. We also tested a lot of different settings, and maybe I can be top 10 in Turkey. Let’s see, Pål Varhaug said after the test. For the last day of 2011 pre-season testing in Barcelona today, the thirteen teams of the GP2 paddock were greeted by a dry track. As the morning session opened, it was Lotus ART’s Jules Bianchi on new tyres who set the early pace. But the Frenchman would not stay in control of the timing sheet for too long as Team AirAsia’s Luiz Razia bettered Bianchi’s laptime by 0.08s while Charles Pic slipped into P3 for Barwa Addax. The first hour of the session started to look like a qualifying session as yesterday’s fastest man Davide Valsecchi claimed the top spot in the following lap going three tenths faster than his teammate. While the Italian’s laptime stayed unbeaten, the remainder of the field fought tooth and nail to make their way up the timesheet. Carlin’s Oliver Turvey found some extra pace in the third sector which put him in P2 as Scuderia Coloni’s Michael Herck moved to P3. Just before the one hour mark, a red flag – caused by Julian Leal – stopped the proceedings after the Rapax man went off the track at Turn 12. When the session resumed, Dams’ Romain Grosjean put his head down to move up to P3, but as Davide Rigon completed a lap good enough to put him on P2, his teammate at Scuderia Coloni Herck improved his personal best and went top, 0.06s ahead of Valsecchi. Sam Bird’s efforts to better the Romanian’s laptime fell short by 0.02s. Grosjean managed to slip into P3 six hundredths slower than the iSport driver. One last red flag stopped the session with one minute left on the clock. The first eighteen drivers finished within the same second. The afternoon session saw Racing Engineering’s Christian Vietoris make his way to the top of the timesheet until Marcus Ericsson at iSport improved the German’s laptime by 1.9s. GP3 Series Champion Esteban Gutierrez was the first to get closer to the Swede, moving up to P2 with a laptime half a second slower than Ericsson’s. Bianchi was then on a mission, but failed to claim the top spot by 0.2s. On his following lap, the Frenchman improved on every sector and took control of the timesheet. In the final hour of the session, Valsecchi reclaimed the title of fastest man clocking in a laptime three tenths quicker than Bianchi. Rigon proved Scuderia Coloni’s good form by edging the Lotus ART racer out of P2. The session was briefly red flagged three times in the last thirty minutes. This concluded the 2011 pre-season testing. The seventh season of the GP2 Series will open in Istanbul on May 6-7-8. Morning session Driver Team Laptime Laps 1. Michael Herck Scuderia Coloni 1:29.608 34 2. Sam Bird iSport International 1:29.633 20 3. Romain Grosjean Dams 1:29.639 31 4. Davide Valsecchi Team Air Asia 1:29.669 38 5. Luca Filippi Super Nova Racing 1:29.697 34 6. Davide Rigon Scuderia Coloni 1:29.754 32 7. Christian Vietoris Racing Engineering 1:29.805 30 8. Oliver Turvey Carlin 1:29.860 31 9. Luiz Razia Team AirAsia 1:29.970 47 10. Max Chilton Carlin 1:29.973 32 11. Giedo van der Garde Barwa Addax Team 1:29.983 33 12. Stefano Coletti Trident Racing 1:29.993 24 13. Charles Pic Barwa Addax Team 1:30.051 26 14. Jules Bianchi Lotus ART 1:30.052 38 15. Josef Kral Arden International 1:30.123 29 16. Marcus Ericsson iSport International 1:30.264 35 17. Dani Clos Racing Engineering 1:30.376 24 18. Pal Varhaug Dams 1:30.405 28 19. Jolyon Palmer Arden International 1:30.640 28 20. Fabio Leimer Rapax 1:30.649 23 21. Rodolfo Gonzalez Trident Racing 1:30.679 34 22. Johnny Cecotto Ocean Racing Technology 1:30.772 22 23. Esteban Gutierrez Lotus ART 1:30.847 27 24. Fairuz Fauzy Super Nova Racing 1:30.994 32 25. Kevin Mirocha Ocean Racing Technology 1:31.096 22 26. Julian Leal Rapax 1:32.743 14 Afternoon Session Driver Team Laptime Laps 1. Davide Valsecchi Team AirAsia 1:30.316 35 2. Davide Rigon Scuderia Coloni 1:30.591 26 3. Jules Bianchi Lotus ART 1:30.675 38 4. Marcus Ericsson iSport International 1:30.810 35 5. Luiz Razia Team AirAsia 1:31.179 32 6. Esteban Gutierrez Lotus ART 1:31.184 38 7. Fabio Leimer Rapax 1:31.243 33 8. Julian Leal Rapax 1:31.254 31 9. Kevin Mirocha Ocean Racing Technology 1:31.483 32 10. Luca Filippi Super Nova Racing 1:31.738 23 11. Fairuz Fauzy Super Nova Racing 1:31.786 26 12. Max Chilton Carlin 1:32.120 41 13. Christian Vietoris Racing Engineering 1:32.750 33 14. Romain Grosjean Dams 1:33.478 42 15. Michael Herck Scuderia Coloni 1:33.505 28 16. Pal Varhaug Dams 1:33.536 36 17. Stefano Coletti Trident Racing 1:33.673 39 18. Dani Clos Racing Engineering 1:33.863 31 19. Oliver Turvey Carlin 1:33.868 31 20. Jolyon Palmer Arden International 1:33.905 36 21. Rodolfo Gonzalez Trident Racing 1:34.038 40 22. Josef Kral Arden International 1:34.097 37 23. Sam Bird iSport International 1:34.152 43 24. Giedo van der Garde Barwa Addax Team 1:34.195 30 25. Charles Pic Barwa Addax Team 1:34.296 28 26. Johnny Cecotto Ocean Racing Technology 1:34.314 47
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