DAMS Racing returned to the front of the grid in Hungary thanks to pole position secured by GP3 graduate Alex Lynn.
Stoffel Vandoorne set the pace early and posted a benchmark of 1:28.258, with Raffaele Marciello and Rio Haryanto posting times within half a second to the Belgian’s. On his second timed lap before the halfway mark, Vandoorne improved again to register a 1:28.051 and was looking to be unbeatable.
During the mid-session lull where all of the drivers return to the pits, both DAMS cars of Pierre Gasly and Lynn took to the empty track to post their flying laps without traffic impeding them.
It’s a tactic that has been exercised before, mainly through Daniel De Jong last season, although it has never really paid off.
Gasly failed to improve on his position and remained in fifth position, although his team-mate Lynn, who was sitting in eighth position, leapfrogged the field into provisional pole before returning to the pits.
It was then up to the rest of the field to try and demote Lynn from pole with Vandoorne leading the charge from second position. Despite two quick flying laps he fell just short of Lynn’s best and had to settle for second position.
Alexander Rossi needed a good qualifying session to challenge Vandoorne in the race, however, he was well off the pace in the session and couldn’t improve on his 11th position, where he spent most of the 30 minutes.
Last year’s winner Arthur Pic looked threatening towards the end of the session to steal pole from Lynn, although fell a tenth of a second short and will line up third on the second row of the grid alongside Marciello.
Image via GP2 Series Media