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Maxime Jousse tops FPA test day

Tuesday, April 20 2010

18-year-old Maxime Jousse has set the pace today during the official Formula Palmer Audi pre-season test at Snetterton.

Like the majority of drivers, Jousse set his fastest time in the overboost enabled session at the end of the day, and the Frenchman's time of 1:05.440s was enough to edge out morning pacesetter Aaron Steele by just 0.020s. Ginetta-backed racer Nigel Moore completed the top three order as he continued to improve with every session.

"I do not read too much into the times, but it was definitely a good day," said Jousse. "The win and three podiums towards the end of last season really gave me the confidence for the season ahead and I am looking forward to the first event at Brands Hatch."

Matt Bell and Jordan Williams set identical lap times in fourth and fifth, with Jordan setting the fastest non-boost time of the entire day. The young Briton was the quickest driver overall ahead of the final 30 minutes of running, but his flying overboost lap was ruined after he was baulked by a slowing car.

"It has been a really enjoyable day," said Williams. "I didn't really know what to expect ahead of the test but I improved throughout the day, so I can be happy with my performance so far. This was only a test of course, but I hope to be mixing it with the quicker guys when the season gets underway."

Howard Fuller's morning pace was good enough for sixth at the finish, ahead of Spaniard Ramon Pineiro. Ash Davies jumped several places up the timesheet in the closing stages, with the Welshman grabbing eighth in the final few minutes.

Melroy Heemskerk hailed his test experience as a 'good learning curve' after he ended the day in ninth, ahead Italian Giuseppe Cipriani. Vincent Beltoise and James Thorp completed the order. The top ten drivers were separated by less than a second.

Several drivers were unable to attend the test due to the well documented volcanic ash cloud that has caused so many airspace problems over the last few days.

Formula Palmer Audi Championship - Snetterton Test - 12 April - Overall Classification:

1. Maxime Jousse, 1:05.440s
2. Aaron Steele, 1:05.460s
3. Nigel Moore, 1:05.500s
4. Matt Bell, 1:05.600s
5. Jordan Williams, 1:05.600s
6. Howard Fuller, 1:06.040s
7. Ramon Pineiro, 1:06.100s
8. Ash Davies, 1:06.200s
9. Melroy Heemskerk, 1:06.300s
10. Giuseppe Cipriani, 1:06.400s
11. Vincent Beltoise, 1:06.550s
12. James Thorp, 1:07.400s