HWA Racelab’s Jake Hughes put in a solid lap to score Paul Ricard feature race pole in FIA Formula 3 (F3) Championship beating Prema’s Jehan Daruvala.

After an interrupted qualifying in F2, the F3 session at Paul Ricard was relatively smooth as Prema’s Jehan Daruvala set early pace with a 1m50.381s to take provisional pole from ART Grand Prix’s Christian Lundgaard and Trident’s Niko Kari.

It was a close fight towards the end as times started to tumble. Just for a brief moment, Hitech GP’s Leonardo Pulcini toppled Daruvala but the Indian fought back to re-take the top position with a 1m49.606s – only one to dip into the 1m49s bracket for the moment.

With a cool down lap down, drivers went around for their final attempt but Daruvala couldn’t improve on his lap time. His teammates did improve but couldn’t better on the Indian’s time which was eventually beaten by HWA Racelab’s Jake Hughes.

The British racer put a 1m49.519s to beat Daruvala by 0.087s in a last-gasp effort to snatch pole from the Prema driver, while Robert Shwartzman (1m49.758s) slotted in third ahead of Trident’s Pedro Piquet (1m49.944s).

The Brazilian had a late improvement to be the fourth driver in the 1m49s bracket as he pushed Prema’s Marcus Armstrong (1m50.066s) to fifth, while Pulcini (1m50.095s) dropped to sixth ahead of teammate Juri Vips (1m50.128s).

The Top 10 had HWA Racelab’s Bent Viscaal (1m50.192s), Kari (1m50.253s) and Campos Racing’s Alex Peroni (1m50.316s) as Carlin’s Logan Sargeant missed on a berth to be 11th ahead of Lundgaard, MP Motorsport’s Richard Verschoor, ART’s Max Fewtrell and MP Motorsport’s Liam Lawson in Top 15.

Position 16-29: Ye Yifei, Lirim Zendeli, Felipe Drugovich, Devlin Defrancesco, Simo Laaksonen, Teppei Natori, David Beckmann, Fabio Scherer, Raoul Hyman, Keyvan Andres, Sebastian Fernandez, Yuki Tsunoda, Andreas Estner and Alessio Deledda.