Dean Stoneman will start the first-ever GP3 race at Sochi Autodrom in Russia from pole position later today after dominating qualifying by almost half a second.
Stoneman has switched from the absent Manor team, which failed to make the trip to Sochi due to commercial reasons, to Koiranen GP this weekend.
Still wearing his Marussia-branded overalls, Stoneman led the way for the majority of the 30-minute session.
After topping the first runs with a 1m52.501s laptime, Stoneman set a stunning 1m51.715s on his second set of new tyres.
The closest anyone came was the ART trio of Alex Fontana, Marvin Kirchhofer and Dino Zamparelli, who all lapped within 0.084s of each other. Stoneman’s advantage over Fontana was 0.489s.
Koiranen’s Jimmy Eriksson will start fifth, 0.6s off the pole time of his new team-mate, while title contender Richie Stanaway (Status GP) was sixth fastest, 0.7s off the pace.
Stanaway needs to overturn a 50-point deficit to points leader Alex Lynn over the next four races to wrest the title away.
Carlin driver Lynn was on target to take pole on his final lap, but a huge lock-up at Turn 13 ruined his chances having set a purple first sector and personal-best second sector. He will start eighth, behind Kevin Ceccon.
Patric Niederhauser and Emil Bernstorff rounded out the top 10.
|1||Dean Stoneman||Koiranen GP||1m51.715s||–||11|
|2||Alex Fontana||ART Grand Prix||1m52.204s||0.489s||13|
|3||Marvin Kirchhofer||ART Grand Prix||1m52.208s||0.493s||12|
|4||Dino Zamparelli||ART Grand Prix||1m52.288s||0.573s||12|
|5||Jimmy Eriksson||Koiranen GP||1m52.388s||0.673s||12|
|6||Richie Stanaway||Status Grand Prix||1m52.476s||0.761s||13|
|7||Kevin Ceccon||Jenzer Motorsport||1m52.499s||0.784s||13|
|9||Patric Niederhauser||Arden International||1m52.527s||0.812s||14|
|11||Nick Yelloly||Status Grand Prix||1m52.607s||0.892s||12|
|12||Jann Mardenborough||Arden International||1m52.906s||1.191s||13|
|13||Matheo Tuscher||Jenzer Motorsport||1m52.981s||1.266s||14|
|14||Robert Visoiu||Arden International||1m53.019s||1.304s||15|
|15||Riccardo Agostini||Hilmer Motorsport||1m53.151s||1.436s||14|
|17||Pal Varhaug||Jenzer Motorsport||1m53.193s||1.478s||15|
|19||Alfonso Celis||Status Grand Prix||1m53.693s||1.978s||14|
|20||Luis Jorge Sa Silva||Carlin||1m53.742s||2.027s||14|
|21||Santiago Urrutia||Koiranen GP||1m53.744s||2.029s||14|
|22||Nelson Mason||Hilmer Motorsport||1m54.191s||2.476s||14|
|23||Nikolay Martsenko||Hilmer Motorsport||1m54.700s||2.985s||14|