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After finishing second quickest to Adrian Quaife-Hobbs on Monday, Alexander Rossi moved to the top of the timesheets as Formula Renault 3.5 testing continued at Spain’s Motorland Aragón circuit on Tuesday. Behind the American, who raced in GP3 this year, were New Zealander Brendon Hartley and Italian Daniel Zampieri.
As well as Rossi’s clear raw pace in a World Series by Renault car, there were a number of elements highlighted at the Spanish track on Tuesday – not least the pace of Zampieri’s third-fastest entry, which was just a quarter of a second off Rossi’s best effort of 1:42.798, despite BVM Target being the new team on the grid ahead of 2011.
22 cars took to the track on Tuesday, with one of them being British Formula 3 Champion Jean-Eric Vergne, who was back in action with Carlin. New names were Stéphane Richelmi and Cesar Ramos, who both drove with Draco. At Tech 1, Nathanaël Berthon was joined by Formula 2 star Sergey Afanasiev whereas F2 Champion Dean Stoneman partnered Dominic Storey at the Lotus Racing Junior squad.
Epsilon Euskadi ran Britain’s Will Stevens alongside Genis Olivé, with Max Snegirev driving for Fortec for the first time. After taking part with Fortec himself on Monday, Italy’s Fabio Onidi switched to ISR for the second day of action.
The sun continued to shine although ambient temperatures failed to soar past 10°C (50°F) during the morning in what is becoming an ever-increasingly chilly Spain as October continues. With tyres building up to temperature, Tuesday’s pattern of several long runs from each driver was followed.
Hartley’s P1 Motorsport car set the early pace before Rossi and Quaife-Hobbs, of ISR and Comtec respectively, raised the bar; this was then followed by an improvement from the Kiwi, although the former Red Bull Racing F1 reserve driver was unable to topple Rossi.
As the afternoon period loomed after the customary lunch break, the top drivers continued to set the pace. However, Ferrari Academy man Zampieri then shot to the top of the timesheets - taking Stéphane Richelmi with him - before Rossi assumed normal service from Hartley, leaving the Italian third from Quaife-Hobbs, Russia’s Anton Nebylitskiy and sixth-placed Monegasque pilot Richelmi.
- Post-session feelings from pace-setter Alexander Rossi
Day 3 of 3 commences at Aragón on Wednesday morning
World Series by Renault
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