American racer Alexander Rossi has claimed the final pole position of the GP2 season as his bid for a Formula One seat continues to gather steam.
Rossi has enjoyed a successful season in the support series to Formula One, scoring three podiums and a number of other top ten finishes to leave himself eleventh in the championship heading to the final two races in Abu Dhabi, whilst teammate Sergio Canamasas has scored just two points all year long. Besides this, Rossi has also been working as Caterham’s reserve driver in F1, earning himself a run-out in practice for the Canadian Grand Prix earlier this year, and he is expected to do the same in front of his home fans at Austin later this month.
Under the lights in Abu Dhabi, Rossi was highly impressive at the wheel of the Caterham Racing car, but it was initially not enough for him to secure his first pole position of the season as Swedish driver Marcus Ericsson edged him out by just 0.007 seconds.
However, Ericsson’s best time was deleted by the stewards at the end of the session after he was deemed to have “exceeded track limits” on his lap, meaning that he will start down in twelfth place. As a result though, Rossi is promoted to pole position after finishing three-tenths clear of second-placed Sam Bird.
Bird, who also works as Mercedes’ reserve driver, is set to go head-to-head with fourth-placed Fabio Leimer for the title this weekend in the two races that will support the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix. The added twist in GP2 is that the top eight in the first race have their positions reversed for the second race.
Rossi will now be hoping to close out his first season in GP2 with a win. This weekend also sees the final two races in the GP3 championship where future Toro Rosso driver Daniil Kvyat is looking to clinch the title.