PERTAMINA PREMA Theodore Racing showed once again that first time can be a charm too at Sochi.
The team, lining up for the first time at the Russian temporary venue in the FIA Formula 2 Championship, saw Nyck De Vries cruise to a spectacular pole position. The 23-year-old Dutchman set a scintillating mark of 1:46.856, beating his closest rival by more than 2 tenths of a second. It was his second pole position of the year and a positive way to start the weekend as he looks forward to making gains in terms of his championship score and position. In the opening race of the weekend, it will be game on for him in search of his third feature race win of the season.
His team-mate, 21-year-old Indonesian Sean Gelael, showed great pace in practice but did not put it all together in qualifying as he struggled to find the right chemistry right away in the session. His potential for the race looks good though, and on such a tricky venue there will surely be chances for a recovery.
Sean Gelael, Car #3
Free Practice: P12 Fastest lap: 1:49.259
Qualifying: P15 Fastest lap: 1:48.154
“It was looking quite ok from free practice and we seemed quite competitive. In qualifying, we didn’t do our job. It seems all year there has been something and I need to fix my qualifying. The pace in the race is fine but starting so far back it’s always gonna be chaos. We try to learn but there’s only one qualifying left this year. Hopefully, we will get the switch on for the last round. Now we focus on tomorrow’s race.”
Nyck De Vries, Car #4
Free Practice: P2 Fastest lap: 1:48.403
Qualifying: P1 Fastest lap: 1:46.476
“I’m obviously very happy about our second pole. We had a tough last weekend after two positive outings. We have just been disappointed and frustrated in the last few weeks. We came here not knowing the track but I think we had a strong base from the beginning. In FP we were very competitive and we continued taking this momentum to qualifying. I had a good first run, just not enough. It was a bit on my side putting things together. In the second run, we optimized everything and we scored pole. We are back in the fight!”