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Spa F3 Qualifying: Horsten hustles to double pole

Friday, July 23 2021

Hitech GP's Bart Horsten claimed his first pole positions in BRDC British F3, with a double pole in qualifying at Spa-Francorchamps this evening (Friday).

The Australian set his two best laps inside the final five minutes of the session, and usurped long time provisional pole-sitter Zak O'Sullivan. Horsten's fastest time of 2m19.311s secured him a front of the grid start for race one, while his second best effort set right at the end of the 25 minutes was just a tenth slower, and put him at the head of the grid for race two as well. 

Horsten's best time was just 0.045s quicker than O'Sullivan around the longest circuit of the year, and denied the British driver what looked to be a second successive double pole. O'Sullivan had topped the times for much of the final half of the session, but Horsten's time with two minutes remaining knocked the Carlin driver off the top of the times.

O'Sullivan still held the top spot on the second fastest chart for the race two grid, but with the chequered flag flying, Horsten's next effort fell a tenth short of his outright best, but was still enough to secure the Australian a second pole position, this time by 0.084 seconds.

The top four in the session were covered by less than a quarter of a second; Carlin's Christian Mansell in third was just 0.021s faster than Arden's Roman Bilinski, who was 0.0234s away from pole.

Reece Ushijima was fifth for Hitech GP, but will take a five place grid penalty for his involvement in the race three incident at Donington Park. The Japanese driver was 0.141s ahead of Elite Motorsport's Tom Lebbon, who headed teammates Javier Sagrera and Jose Garfias, with the Mexican driver in eighth securing by far his best qualifying result.

Fellow Mexican Sebastian Alvarez was ninth quickest for Hitech, and just over six tenths away from the outright pace, while Bryce Aron (Carlin), Ayrton Simmons (CDR) and Fortec newcomer Hunter Yeany in 12th were all within a second of the pole time.

The race two grid will provisionally see Horsten line-up on pole ahead of O'Sullivan, with Mansell and Bilinski again the top four, and this time covered by 0.223s.

Sagrera climbs to fifth on the race two grid ahead of Ushijima, with Alvarez and Lebbon seventh and eighth.

Aron and Simmons complete the top-10 on the second fastest classification, which was again covered by less than a second.

The first race of the weekend is due to start tomorrow afternoon at 14.20 local time.  

BRDC British F3 Championship, Spa-Francorchamps, Qualifying provisional result (race one grid):
1. Bart Horsten, Hitech GP, 2m19.311s
2. Zak O'Sullivan, Carlin, +0.045s
3. Christian Mansell, Carlin, +0.213s
4. Roman Bilinski, Arden Motorsport, +0.234s
5. Reece Ushijima, Hitech GP, +0.320s*
6. Tom Lebbon, Elite Motorsport, +0.461s
7. Javier Sagrera, Elite Motorsport, +0.526s
8. Jose Garfias, Elite Motorsport, +0.595s
9. Sebastian Alvarez, Hitech GP, +0.606s
10. Bryce Aron, Carlin, +0.894s
11. Ayrton Simmons, Chris Dittmann Racing, +0.994s
12. Hunter Yeany, Fortec Motorsports, +0.997s
13. Roberto Faria, Fortec Motorsports, +1.371s
14. Mikkel Grundtvig, Fortec Motorsports, +2.286s
15. Reema Juffali, Douglas Motorsport, +2.545s
16. Max Marzorati, Chris Dittmann Racing, +3.184s

* Will carry a five place grid penalty for race three incident at Donington Park

BRDC British F3 Championship, Spa Francorchamps, Qualifying second fastest times (race two grid):
1. Bart Horsten, Hitech GP, 2m19.448s
2. Zak O'Sullivan, Carlin, +0.084s
3. Christian Mansell, Carlin, +0.168s
4. Roman Bilinski, Arden Motorsport, +0.223s
5. Javier Sagrera, Elite Motorsport, +0.437s
6. Reece Ushijima, Hitech GP, +0.446s
7. Sebastian Alvarez, Hitech GP, +0.617s
8. Tom Lebbon, Elite Motorsport, +0.718s
9. Bryce Aron, Carlin, +0.902s
10. Ayrton Simmons, Chris Dittmann Racing, +0.980s
11. Hunter Yeany, Fortec Motorsports, +1.154s
12. Jose Garfias, Elite Motorsport, +1.218s
13. Roberto Faria, Fortec Motorsports, +1.240s
14. Mikkel Grundtvig, Fortec Motorsports, +2.238s
15. Reema Juffali, Douglas Motorsport, +2.650s
16. Max Marzorati, Chris Dittmann Racing, +3.456s

For more information, visit www.britishf3.com