Pierre Gasly eases to GP2 pole in Hungary

© GP2 Series

Red Bull junior driver Pierre Gasly eased to his second pole position of the 2016 GP2 Series season in qualifying on Saturday in Hungary.

Gasly arrived in Budapest fresh from breaking his three-year victory drought at Silverstone two weeks ago, lifting himself to third in the drivers’ standings in the process.

The Frenchman produced a stunning lap of 1:25.612 late in qualifying to take pole position by half a second for Prema Powerteam.

It was an improvement Gasly needn’t have made, his previous lap being just 0.05 seconds slower as the rest of the field failed to match his pace.

Sergey Sirotkin qualified second for ART ahead of Antonio Giovinazzi in the second Prema, the Italian’s late lap being ruined by traffic.

Nobuharu Matsushita finished the session fourth ahead of Norman Nato, while Luca Ghiotto qualified sixth for Trident. Arthur Pic followed in P7 with Raffaele Marciello in tow as Jordan King and Marvin Kirchhoffer rounded out the top 10.

With four points for pole, Gasly moves to within a point of series leader Oliver Rowland, who had a qualifying to forget down in 17th place.

Three-time W Series champ Jamie Chadwick joining Andretti in Indy NXT Series for 2023


Jamie Chadwick, the three-time W Series champion, will drive for Andretti Autosport in the Indy NXT Series next season.

Chadwick will make her debut in an American racing series in March, driving the No. 28 for Andretti Autosport with sponsorship from DHL. The 24-year-old will become the first female driver in 13 years to compete full time in the Indy NXT championship.

Chadwick joined the female free-to-enter W Series in its inaugural 2019 season, winning two races and the first of three consecutive championships. She has been a reserve driver for the Williams Formula One team and will continue in that role in 2023. She also has driven in the Extreme E Series.

Despite her success, Chadwick hasn’t landed a bigger ride in F3 or F2, and her break didn’t come until Michael Andretti contacted her and offered a test in an Indy NXT car.

The final three races of this year’s W Series schedule were canceled when funding fell through, but Chadwick still believes the all-female series was the right path for her.

“W Series has always been and will continue to be an opportunity to be racing for every female driver, so for my side, I looked at it while perhaps I would have liked to step up maybe earlier, at the same time being able to have that chance to race, get that experience, have that development, seat time… I was constantly learning,” Chadwick told The Associated Press.

“In that sense, I wasn’t frustrated at all. But on the flip side of it, now I’ve had that experience testing in the United States in Indy NXT and this is something I’m really excited about.”

Chadwick also is expected to have an enhanced role as a development driver next season with Williams, which chose American driver Logan Sargeant to fill its open seat on next year’s F1 grid.

“Andretti Autosport is proud to be supporting Jamie alongside DHL,” said Michael Andretti. “Jamie’s successful career speaks for itself, but Indy NXT gives Jamie the opportunity to continue her development in a new type of racing.

“We’ve turned out five Indy NXT champions over the years and look forward to continuing our role in developing new talent.”

Indy NXT is the new name of the rebranded Indy Lights Series, the final step on the ladder system before IndyCar.

Andretti will field two drivers next season in IndyCar that were developed in Indy NXT: Kyle Kirkwood, the 2021 champion, will return to Andretti after one season in IndyCar driving for A.J. Foyt Racing, and Devlin DeFrancesco is back for a second season.

Chadwick will be teammates in Indy NXT with Hunter McElrea and Louis Foster. She becomes Andretti’s second full-time female driver alongside Catie Munnings, who competes for Andretti United in the Extreme E Series.