Links: Rd 1 Ranking | Wednesday Gallery

With free practice out of the way yesterday, the 142 racers here at the Euros in Portugal headed out onto the packed abrasive surface to set their fastest three consecutive laps to seed for practice. Yesterday’s pacesetter Robert Batlle would set the pace with a time of 1:46.429, whilst David Ronnefalk was unable to iron out small mistakes with a 1:47.447. Juan Carlos Canas would hold off Elliott Boots by 5/100ths (Canas, 1:47.650, Boots, 1:47.701) Boots heading into CP1 with a slight disadvantage having broken his car on pit exit in the morning’s shakedown round.

With the track expected to break up a little (despite holding up well this morning), it’s probable at this stage that drivers should be able to find some time in CP2. Perhaps not needing that was Davide Ongaro, setting a time of 1:45.758 some 7/10ths quicker than Batlle, and some distance ahead of the rest of the pack over 3 laps. Ongaro on his way clicking off 10 of the 14 laps in the 35 sec region. The track surface here in Portugal bears more than a few likenesses to the Buggyland track in Madrid, however despite it’s seeminly abrasive nature tyres last pretty well here, with multiple drivers using the same set for many runs.