Fittipaldi pips Newey for MRF Challenge pole

Championship leader Pietro Fittipaldi inched one step closer to the MRF Challenge 2015 title after qualifying in pole position for the finale at the MMRT in Chennai, edging Harrison Newey by 0.003secs in the final few minutes.

Fittipaldi is the grandson of two-time F1 champion Emerson Fittipaldi

Championship leader Pietro Fittipaldi inched one step closer to the MRF Challenge 2015 title after qualifying in pole position for the finale at the MMRT in Chennai, edging Harrison Newey by 0.003secs in the final few minutes. Indian driver Tarun Reddy qualified in third, ahead of a hugely impressive Mick Schumacher.

Championship contenders Alessio Picariello, Nikita Troitckii and Tatiana Calderon had to settle for fifth, sixth and seventh place respectively. Saturday’s two races will be 15 laps and 20 laps long respectively, the longest that it has ever been for the series at the MMRT.

Challenging circuit

Speaking after qualifying, Fittipaldi, grandson of two-time F1 champion Emerson Fittipaldi, said, “I decided to save my tyres for qualifying and focus on getting the balance right in practice. It paid off as the car felt really good in qualifying and I was able to push. The MMRT is a very challenging circuit to drive on and a lot of fun. It is always best to start on pole position so I hope to convert this into a win tomorrow.”

Newey said, “The car has been great all day long and this circuit is just unbelievable to drive on. I was quick from the get go and managed to bring that same form in qualifying. It is upsetting to miss out on pole position by such a small margin but I am happy to have my best qualifying session of the season. The start will be crucial so hope to have a good race tomorrow.”

Qualifying results: 1. Pietro Fittipaldi, 2. Harrison Newey, 3. Tarun Reddy, 4. Mick Schumacher, 5. Alessio Picariello, 6. Nikita Troitckii, 7. Tatiana Calderon, 8. Aleksanteri Huovinen, 9. Max Fewtrell, 10. Karthik Tharani Singh