Red Bull junior Pierre Gasly submitted a late flying lap to pip McLaren’s reserve driver Stoffel Vandoorne for his second pole position this season.
Gasly’s 1:39.572 was a fraction of a second quicker than the GP2 champion, who will line up second on the grid after his best lap was 0.040 seconds shy of Gasly’s.
The Frenchman set the pace early on in the 30-minute session, posting a 1:40.399, although that was quickly beaten by Racing Engineering’s Jordan King by just under two-tenths of a second.
After completing a cool down lap to conserve his tyre life, Vandoorne then jumped to the top of the table and was the first driver to drop under the 1m40s mark with a 1:39.357.
Arden’s Norman Nato joined him at the top, beating King’s best time by 0.022 seconds and was Vandoorne’s closest challenger for the majority of the session. Late laps registered by the rest of the field demoted Nato to a respectable sixth position.
Alexander Rossi led practice earlier in the morning, however was only running down in 16th after his first run. The American then made to the track early for his second attempt on a fresher set of tyres and rose to fifth, before dropping down the order to ninth once the rest of the field posted their final laps.
Raffaele Marciello qualified third after briefly holding down P1 towards the end of the session, while Alex Lynn will line up behind the Sauber reserve driver in fourth position.
Image via GP2 Series Media