A lottery due to the wet weather conditions during the 2018 European F3 Championship’s qualifying session saw Prema’s Marcus Armstrong taking his first pole from Motopark’s Dan Ticktum at Norisring.
A downpour ahead of the two-part qualifying session meant teams were forced to use the wet weather tyres on a drying Norisring circuit in Germany. The drivers in Group A in the end had a disadvantage due to the drying conditions.
After topping FP2 earlier in the say, Red Bull junior Ticktum remained on top of his group with a 54.553s from Prema’s Ralf Aron (54.771s) and Motopark’s Jonathan Aberdein (54.828s). However, the Group B drivers qualified nearly two second ahead.
It was a dogfight though with rookie Armstrong (52.529s) just managing to edge out Carlin’s Jehan Daruvala (52.624s) to take his first pole by a mere 0.095s. As per the alternate rule, it will be Ticktum on the front-row alongside Armstrong.
The Force India protege will start European F3’s Round 3’s Race 1 in third with Aron beside him, while Prema’s Mick Schumacher (52.629s) after finishing third in Group B, will line-up in fifth alongside Group A’s Aberdein.
Carlin’s Nikita Troitskiy (52.676s) made the most of the conditions to be seventh overall and fourth in his group ahead of Motopark’s Juri Vips (54.866s) and Carlin’s Ferdinand Habsburg (52.687s) with Prema’s Robert Shwartzman (54.883s) rounding the Top 10.
Positions 11-23: Sacha Fenestraz (52.701s), Fabio Scherer (54.895s), Guanyu Zhou (52.886s), Enaam Ahmed (54.949s), Artem Petrov (52.933s), Marino Sato (55.159s), Ameya Vaidyanathan (53.488s), Keyvan Andres (55.349s), Julian Hanses (53.502s), Alex Palou (55.396s), Ben Hingeley (53.527s), Sebastian Fernandez (55.534s) and Petru Florescu (56.421s).
UPDATE: Penalties to Ticktum, Petrov, Habsburg and Schumacher for ignoring the red lights in practice for the former two and qualifying for the latter two, means all the four drivers will drop three places for Race 1 on Saturday.
The revised order stands: Armstrong, Daruvala, Aron, Ticktum, Aberdein, Troitskiy, Schumacher, Vips, Shwartzman, Fenestraz, Scherer, Habsburg, Zhou, Ahmed, Sato, Vaidyanathan, Andres, Petrov, Hanses, Palou, Hingeley, Fernandez and Florescu.