Vandoorne sets new quali record with fourth pole

Stoffel Vandoorne

Image credit – GP2 Media Service

GP2 Qualifying in Abu Dhabi took place under the night sky which sent the air temperature plummeting to 24°C. All 26 drivers went out onto the track at the first opportunity and Stoffel Vandoorne was the man to beat as he went for his fourth straight pole position.

Jolyon Palmer set the early pace with a time of 1:48.918 but it was the man with a target on his back Stoffel Vandoorne who stole provisional pole away from the Brit just seconds later.

With a 2015 contract with Campos in his pocket, Arthur Pic had nothing to really prove on this final weekend. The Frenchman went P7 ahead of his team mate Kimiya Sato just before the halfway stage of the session.

During the mid-session lull Kevin Giovesi adopted Daniël de Jong’s strategy by using the empty track to his advantage. The Italian made the most of the track time by going P15 but by the end of the session he fell to second last.

The closing five minutes of the session saw a frantic dash of drivers searching for the extra tenths that would push them further up the grid. Stéphane Richelmi was looking to qualify well on his last weekend in the Series and his last lap was good enough for P3 while his team mate and 2014 champion Jolyon Palmer managed second place.

Stoffel Vandoorne was the only man quick enough for pole position and with his lap time of 1:48.008 he broke the record for most pole positions in a row.

Position Driver Team Gap
1 S. Vandoorne ART Grand Prix 1:48.088
2 J. Palmer DAMS 0.099
3 S. Richelmi DAMS 0.286
4 M. Evans RT RUSSIAN TIME 0.621
5 F. Nasr Carlin 0.785
6 P. Gasly Caterham Racing 0.885
7 A. Pic Campos Racing 0.897
8 R. Marciello Racing Engineering 0.935
9 S. Coletti Racing Engineering 1.238
10 R. Haryanto Caterham Racing 1.250
11 J. Leal Carlin 1.307
12 J. Cecotto Trident 1.342
13 T. Izawa ART Grand Prix 1.412
14 S. Canamasas Trident 1.417
15 N. Berthon Venezuela GP Lazarus 1.430
16 K. Sato Campos Racing 1.530
17 D. De Jong MP Motorsport 1.579
18 N. Latifi Hilmer Motorsport 1.588
19 A. Negrão Arden International 1.589
20 C. Daly Venezuela GP Lazarus 1.633
21 R. Binder Arden International 1.633
22 M. Sørensen MP Motorsport 1.648
23 S. Trummer Rapax 1.706
24 J. Lancaster Hilmer Motorsport 1.797
25 K. Giovesi Rapax 1.924
26 A. Markelov RT RUSSIAN TIME 2.326
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