The Eurocup Formula Renault 2.0 field had two-50-minute session to learn or re-learn Circuit Spa-Francorchamps.
Flying start for Max Defourny
First against Hugo de Sadeleer (Tech 1 Racing), Sacha Fenestraz and the two AVF by Adrián Vallés entries of Henrique Chaves and Harrison Scott, soon the battle for quickest time went the way of Max Defourny.
Then improving his reference three times, the Belgian driver set the morning reference time of 2:18.513, seven/tenths of a second quicker than team mate Will Palmer (R-ace GP). Sacha Fenestraz, Julien Falchero (R-ace GP) and Jehan Daruvala (Josef Kaufmann Racing) completed the top five at more than one second from the leader.
Following a brief break provoked by Ghislain Cordeel (GMMA Formula Racing), the chase for fastest lap was back with Max Defourny leading the way.
James Allen (JD Motorsport) kicked off the final sprint, which saw the local hero lower the bar to 2:17.663. Sacha Fenestraz, Ferdinand Habsburg, Dorian Boccolacci (Tech 1 Racing) and Hugo de Sadeleer completed the top five.
Max Defourny : “It was a good day with best time in both sessions. However, I think there is still a little more potential in the new tyres, if I am to believe my last run. We have to stay focused when making these small changes and see how they work tomorrow ! I have to do the same to get back in the championship. I don’t know if racing at home gives a motivation boost, but maybe it would feel even better to win here !”
Sacha Fenestraz : “It was complicated this morning. I wasn’t very satisfied with my driving, we were struggling with the car and honestly I wasn’t expecting a time like that. However, the big gaps will help us keep this performance in perspective. I worked on it all afternoon and we did a good job to sort it all out. There is still a lot of work to do to take the top spot away from Max, without forgetting that the track and drivers will improve. It was a positive day and I’ll continue to give it all I have got.”
Ferdinand Habsburg : “We got a poor start to the day. Following an accident at the Nürburgring last weekend, we had a problem with the left rear tyre. That slowed us down on the straights and also impacted the steering. Once these issue were solved, I went from second to last this morning to second on fresh rubber and third on new tyres. There is definitely something to do and we have excellent data from when Ben Barnicoat ran here last year. I’m looking forward to the qualifying session !”