GP2: Vandoorne storms to home pole position at Spa


Stoffel Vandoorne continued his relentless streak at the head of the GP2 Series field by securing pole position for his home race in Belgium this weekend.

Vandoorne entered the weekend leading the series by 85 points after a remarkable run of form in the opening six rounds, scoring four wins and five further podium finishes.

A Belgian driver has never won a GP2 race at their home event at the Circuit de Spa-Francorchamps, but Vandoorne has given himself a golden opportunity to do exactly that by scoring pole on Friday.

The ART Grand Prix driver dominated proceedings throughout the session, with his best lap of 1:56.278 being enough to give him a fourth pole position of the year.

“I was on pole here last year so to be on pole here again this year is a pretty good feeling,” Vandoorne said.

“It’s a special race for me in front of my home fans. Last year I came pretty close to victory. I finished P2 so tomorrow we will have to do a little bit better than last year.”

Vandoorne will be joined on the front row of the grid by Oliver Rowland, who will take part in just his third GP2 race this weekend with MP Motorsport. The Briton fell 0.147 seconds short of Vandoorne at the front, and felt that he could have taken a shock pole.

“I missed a tenth I think and I made a couple of mistakes,” Rowland said. “I’m not a hundred per cent sure what ART did but they did only one lap on the second run and I said to my team that there was no point to do two.

“I thought maybe we should save the fuel and just do one push lap. But they preferred to stick with the plan. I made a slight mistake in the first sector. So that together, means P2 today.”

Silverstone winner Sergey Sirotkin ran well to finish third ahead of Racing Engineering’s Jordan King and ART’s Nobuharu Matsushita, whilst Mitch Evans and Pierre Gasly qualified sixth and seventh.

American driver Alexander Rossi struggled to put up much of a fight at the front of the field, qualifying eighth. Alex Lynn and Norman Nato rounded out the top ten.

To see the full classification from qualifying at Spa, click here.