Report: Le Castellet Qualifying
Quickest times for Gerstl, Schlegelmilch, Chovanec-Lopez and Geier in qualifying for the French Historic Grand Prix at Circuit Paul Ricard.
Ingo Gerstl (AUT, Top Speed) leads the BOSS GP F1 Class to the green light for the fifth time this season. Gerstl in the Toro Rosso STR1 took the clear pole position for the two races at the Le Castellet Grand Prix circuit with a time of 1:42.953. Next best F1 driver in qualifying was Ulf Ehninger (GER, ESBA Racing) in his Benetton B197. Ehninger is racing at Le Castellet for the first time and is already coping amazingly well with the demanding circuit on day two. A highlight for the French fans is the appearance of Didier Sirgue (FRA, LRS Racing) in the Jaguar R2. Sirgue qualified third in Eddie Irvine’s car from the 2001 Formula 1 season. As recently proved at the Red Bull Ring, the F1 Class will again start the race at the Grand Prix de France Historique around twenty seconds ahead of the rest of the field. This is to reduce the risks at the start of the race.
The closest to Gerstl’s best time was again Harald Schlegelmilch (LVA, HS Engineering) in his modified World Series car. Schlegelmilch is therefore the favorite to win the OPEN classification.
The leader of the FORMULA class, Zdenek Chovanec-Lopez (PRT, MM International), also set the pace in qualifying. Simone Colombo (ITA, MM International) qualified second in class, ahead of fast BOSS GP returnee Marc Faggionato (MCO, Zig-Zag). Close behind was Marco Ghiotto (ITA, Scuderia Palladio), who managed to move up the results list from far behind with a spot-on lap just before the end. Francesco Malavasi (ITA, Scuderia Palladio) was able to meet the expectations after the good practice sessions on Friday and finished fifth ahead of Luca Martucci (ITA, MM International).
In the BOSS GP SUPER LIGHTS Class, Alexander Geier (AUT, Geier Racing) prevailed over his compatriot and season dominator Andreas Hasler (AUT, Hasler Motorsport). Geier thus also rewarded his team, which put a lot of working time into the Formula Renault bolide with V6 engine after a fire at Hockenheim.
The two races will start today (Saturday) and tomorrow (Sunday) at 3:30 p.m. local time. There will already be the grid walk from 2:50 p.m. The races can be followed live on the Automoto La chaîne YouTube (only in France) stream.
Picture: Jean-Marie Biadatti/PhotoClassicRacing.com