GP2 Quick Men Faster Than F1 Tailenders

Predictions that GP2 pacesetters would be in among the F1 times at Monte Carlo became a reality after the first session of practice for both categories in Monaco.

Earlier this month, Flavio Briatore told the Italian Autosprint magazine that he thought it would have been much better if the premier category had moved in the direction of three-car teams from the leading performers, rather than open up the grid to new, slower teams.

"When we were asking to have three cars, the Federation instead opened the doors to teams who had no budget guarantees whatsoever," Briatore said. "There are teams in F1 who are only two seconds quicker compared to GP2 teams and they are spending 60-70 million while GP2 costs three million. Something's wrong there..."

At the time Briatore spoke out, certain paddock figures muttered that on the tight Monte Carlo street circuit, it wouldn't be a surprise to find that the leading GP2 teams were quicker than the F1 tailenders, and so it proved.

Pascal Maldonado topped the first session of GP2 practice with a lap in 1:20.476, which was quicker than the first session F1 times from Virgin Racing's Lucas di Grassi (1:20.556) and HRT pair Bruno Senna (1:21.688) and Karun Chandhok (1:21.853). Furthermore, the top six in the GP2 field were all quicker than the HRTs.

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