Evans 13th in learning Bahrain circuit, Leimer tops session

Autosport

Fabio Leimer set the fastest time in practice for the second race weekend of the GP2 Series season at Sakhir in Bahrain.

Sepang feature race winner Leimer hit the top of the timesheets from the get-go in his Racing Engineering entry.

His first flying lap was a 1m42.369s, and after a cool-down lap, he went flat-out again and set a 1m41.361s, holding a huge advantage over his rivals in the second sector in particular.

Sam Bird ended the session in second for the new Russian Time team, but was 1.06 seconds slower than Leimer. Championship leader Stefano Coletti, the Sepang sprint race winner, was third fastest for Rapax.

Category returnee Alexander Rossi was an impressive fourth fastest for Caterham Racing, ahead of Marcus Ericsson, Felipe Nasr and James Calado.

All cars ran on the harder compound Pirelli tyre, as teams concentrated on race set-up. Spots of rain fell during the session, but with a track temperature between 38C-41C that was never a major issue.

Formula Renault 3.5 champion Robin Frijns made his GP2 debut for Hilmer Motorsport, and spun during session, which he ended 23rd – 2.5s off the pace.

Other incidents of note included Julien Leal stalling at the end of the pitlane before his second run, which led to race stewards investigating whether his Racing Engineering mechanics restarted the car outside of the pitlane limits.

Johnny Cecotto had a lively session, his Arden car smoking profusely at high speed early on, and later he suffered a big lock-up at Turn 1, then an overshoot elsewhere. He was ninth fastest behind the second Russian Time car of Tom Dillmann.

Pos  Driver               Team                Time       Gap
 1.  Fabio Leimer         Racing Engineering  1m41.361s
 2.  Sam Bird             Russian Time        1m42.421s  + 1.060s
 3.  Stefano Coletti      Rapax               1m42.628s  + 1.267s
 4.  Alexander Rossi      Caterham            1m42.636s  + 1.275s
 5.  Marcus Ericsson      DAMS                1m42.666s  + 1.305s
 6.  Felipe Nasr          Carlin              1m42.687s  + 1.326s
 7.  James Calado         ART                 1m42.718s  + 1.357s
 8.  Tom Dillmann         Russian Time        1m42.734s  + 1.373s
 9.  Johnny Cecotto       Arden               1m42.803s  + 1.442s
10.  Daniel Abt           ART                 1m42.943s  + 1.582s
11.  Stephane Richelmi    DAMS                1m43.035s  + 1.674s
12.  Simon Trummer        Rapax               1m43.054s  + 1.693s
13.  Mitch Evans          Arden               1m43.063s  + 1.702s
14.  Sergio Canamasas     Caterham            1m43.092s  + 1.731s
15.  Julian Leal          Racing Engineering  1m43.156s  + 1.795s
16.  Jolyon Palmer        Carlin              1m43.188s  + 1.827s
17.  Kevin Ceccon         Trident             1m43.271s  + 1.910s
18.  Kevin Giovesi        Lazarus             1m43.280s  + 1.919s
19.  Jake Rosenzweig      Addax               1m43.310s  + 1.949s
20.  Rio Haryanto         Addax               1m43.356s  + 1.995s
21.  Rene Binder          Lazarus             1m43.620s  + 2.259s
22.  Nathanael Berthon    Trident             1m43.670s  + 2.309s
23.  Robin Frijns         Hilmer              1m43.875s  + 2.514s
24.  Adrian Quaife-Hobbs  MP                  1m44.002s  + 2.641s
25.  Daniel de Jong       MP                  1m44.200s  + 2.839s
26.  Pal Varhaug          Hilmer              1m44.915s  + 3.554s

Evans 13th in learning Bahrain circuit, Leimer tops session

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