Artem Markelov (1m57.266) and Tadasuke Makino (1m57.394) will start the Spa-Francorchamps F2 Feature race 10th and 11th on the grid respectively.
Artem was fourth quickest after the first qualifying runs but failed to improve on his second run. After a mistake in sector two, he aborted his lap and went again, only to encounter a yellow flag after Antonio Fuoco’s Charouz Racing System entry stopped on the circuit.
Tada, meanwhile, made impressive progress throughout the day on his first visit to the fast and demanding 7km Spa circuit. Eighteenth at the conclusion of practice, he found almost 3s in qualifying to narrowly miss out on a place in the top 10. Pole position was taken by Nyck De Vries (1m56.054s), ahead of championship leader George Russell and Sergio Sette Camara.
Artem Markelov: “My first qualifying run was okay but I was unlucky with the yellow flag on my second one and I think we could have been significantly higher up the grid. Still, Spa is a track at which you can overtake and I will do my best to score strong points tomorrow in a race I managed to win last year.”
Tadasuke Makino: “I took a sensible approach to learning what is a great, high-speed circuit and then produced a decent lap in qualifying. On such a long lap, I was less than a second away from a front-row time. While you always want more, I think that is a good base from which to start tomorrow’s race.”
Svetlana Strelnikova (Team principal): “The cards did not fall for Artem today and he was hampered by a yellow flag, but Spa has been a happy hunting ground for him: he scored his first GP2 podium in the Feature race here in 2015 and won the F2 Feature race here last year, so hopefully he can produce something special again. Everyone knows and loves the challenge offered by Spa and Tada did a great job to put his car right on the fringe of the top 10. Hopefully he, too, can have a strong race from 11th.”