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Impressive P3 for Jolyon Palmer at Jerez GP2 test day one

Tuesday, February 28 2012

Jolyon Palmer started the first day of the official GP2 test at Jerez with front running pace today (Tuesday), ending with a superb third place. The three-day test is the first of two pre-season practices before the first race of the year at Malaysia on 23-25 March.

The test began in earnest as the Spanish sunshine warmed a cold track with only a few drivers completing installation laps. A brief red flag interruption preceded a busy mid-morning run for all of the drivers and Jolyon's early laps were immediately on the pace of the top ten as his iSport team perfected their setup for the former Spanish and European Grand Prix venue.

Jolyon ran in the top five for much of the morning as he continued to settle in with his new GP2 team. Working well with team mate Ericsson, who completed the 2011 season with iSport, the pair kept the squad at the sharp end of the field, before Jolyon set the third fastest time.

After the lunchbreak track temperatures were too high to match the earlier times and Jolyon continued with set-up work, completing 59 laps of the track as part of the familiarisation process with the iSport team. However a mid-afternoon run saw him lap at the front of the field with Ericsson.

The field continued to trade times before another brief stoppage was occasioned by debris on the track, as the session entered its final hour. Conditions remained less favourable to the field in the warm afternoon and no-one was able to improve on the morning's pace.

Satisfied with the day's work, Jolyon commented: "We managed to get through some set up work in the morning which was productive and this afternoon we made more progress with the set up. Unfortunately I had bad traffic on new tyres, so my best time was set on old tyres, but overall I'm very happy and confident with the pace. In the end I was third quickest, which is a good way to start the year."

The Jerez test continues tomorrow (29 February) and Thursday (1 March).

Jerez GP2 test session day one results:

1. D Valsecchi, DAMS, 1:26.014s
2. F Onidi, Scuderia Colini, +0.203s
3. J Palmer, iSport International, +0.205s
4. M Ericsson, iSport International, +0.252s
5. E Gutierrez, Lotus GP, +0.394s
6. J Calado, Lotus GP, +0.572s
7. F Leimer, Racing Engineering, +0.762
8. S Richelmi, Trident Racing, +0.874s
9. S Coletti, Scuderia Coloni, +0.877s
10. D Clos, Rapax, +0.930s

Click here to visit Jolyon's website.