Kirchhofer blazes to maiden pole
German rookie Marvin Kirchhöfer enjoyed his first GP3 pole position and couldn’t have picked a better place to do it than at home in Germany at the Hockenheimring. The impressive ART Grand Prix star edged out Series leader Alex Lynn. Nick Yelloly (Status Grand Prix) completed the top three.
Hot temperatures again greeted Hockenheim for the 27 drivers in the thirty minute qualifying session. Jimmy Eriksson (Koiranen GP) was first to set the pace followed by Patrick Kujala (Marussia Manor Racing) and debutant Mitchell Gilbert (Trident).
Kirchhöfer broke into the 1m29’s, lapping almost half a second quicker than his nearest rival, whilst his ART Grand Prix teammate Dino Zamparelli lit the timing screen purple in the first two sectors but had to back off in the final sector due to a yellow flag from a small spin from Alfonso Celis. Jr.
Carlin’s Lynn flew to the head of the timings, with Zamparelli demoting Kirchhöfer to third. The Red Bull Junior driver then bettered his own personal best to increase his advantage over the pack and looked set to score a third pole position of the season. But Kirchhöfer had his own plan and was not to be out done in front of his army of passionate fans: clocking the quickest laptime of the session with a 1:28.647 which was a mere 0.059s faster than Lynn. Yelloly also improved to third as the chequered flag was waved to record his best qualifying position of the 2014 season.
Kirchhöfer and Lynn locked out the front row, with Yelloly and Emil Bernstorff starting from the second row. Eriksson qualified in P5, in front of Gilbert – the Australian rookie in only his second race weekend producing a fine effort in sixth for Trident. Zamparelli, Richie Stanaway, Mathéo Tuscher and Dean Stoneman rounded out of the top ten.
Race 1 takes place later today at 16:20 and with record temperatures expected.