Piastri impresses in Formula Renault rookie test

Oscar Piastri at the test

Oscar Piastri was seventh-fastest overall in the Formula Renault Eurocup Official Rookie Test in Barcelona overnight.

Piastri was one of 15 rookie drivers invited to take part in the test day, which featured a total of 36 drivers, having finished second in this year’s British Formula 4 Championship.

The Melburnian finished sixth-fastest in the morning session and fifth-fastest in the afternoon, lapping quicker than his fellow Arden Motorsport drivers and also three other countrymen.

His best lap of 1:42.434s in the morning session, the faster of the two 3hr 30min hit-outs for most drivers, was less than 0.3s off the benchmark set by Italian Lorenzo Colombo.

Piastri, who recorded the fastest Sector 2 split in that session, was set to improve his position before he spun at Turn 4.

“The morning session was very good, apart from the spin on my second push lap with new tyres,” said the 16-year-old.

“I haven’t driven the Renault car at Barcelona before so I was working hard to find my markers and get into a rhythm for most of the session.”

In the afternoon, he lapped 0.15s slower, with only the pace-setting American Neil Verhagen going faster out of the top 12 overall.

“I didn’t get an optimal run on my new tyres in that session,” said Piastri.

“It seemed like everyone swarmed onto the track in the last 10 minutes so I got blocked a little and then had to lift and find track position.

“My push laps came too late and these tyres have only a one or two lap window of maximum grip.

“I’m pretty happy with how the day went. Of course, as a driver you always know there was some time to gain in some sections and there are a few specific techniques with this car so I’ll be working on that over the winter.”

Of the other Australians, 2017 Formula Renault Eurocup race winner Alex Peroni finished the day 11th-fastest, Thomas Randle 12th-fastest, and Thomas Maxwell 23rd.

Peroni is yet to confirm his 2018 plans.

Results: Formula Renault Eurocup Rookie Test

Pos Driver Nat Team Morning Afternoon Fastest Split
1 Neil VERHAGEN USA Tech 1 Racing 1:42.475 1:42.146 1:42.146
2 Lorenzo COLOMBO ITA JD Motorsport 1:42.150 1:42.229 1:42.150 0.004
3 Alexander SMOLYAR RUS Tech 1 Racing 1:42.202 1:42.654 1:42.202 0.056
4 Alexander VARTANYAN RUS R-Ace GP 1:42.293 1:42.853 1:42.293 0.147
5 Richard VERSCHOOR NED Josef Kaufmann Racing 1:42.366 1:42.504 1:42.366 0.220
6 Yifei YE CHN Josef Kaufmann Racing 1:42.431 1:42.810 1:42.431 0.285
7 Oscar PIASTRI AUS Arden 1:42.434 1:42.585 1:42.434 0.288
8 Max FEWTRELL GBR R-Ace GP 1:42.460 1:42.999 1:42.460 0.314
9 Logan SARGEANT USA R-Ace GP 1:42.479 1:42.716 1:42.479 0.333
10 Victor MARTINS FRA R-Ace GP 1:42.522 1:42.578 1:42.522 0.376
11 Alex PERONI AUS R-Ace GP 1:42.635 1:43.411 1:42.635 0.489
12 Thomas RANDLE AUS MP Motorsport 1:42.678 1:42.813 1:42.678 0.532
13 Chritian LUNDGAARD DEN MP Motorsport 1:42.868 1:42.680 1:42.680 0.534
14 Felipe DRUGOVICH BRA Arden 1:42.862 1:42.787 1:42.787 0.641
15 James PULL GBR Tech 1 Racing 1:43.538 1:42.796 1:42.796 0.650
16 Charles MILESI FRA R-Ace GP 1:42.912 1:44.229 1:42.912 0.766
17 Xavier LLOVERAS ESP AVF By Adrian Valles 1:43.555 1:42.968 1:42.968 0.822
18 Arthur ROUGIER FRA Fortec Motorsports 1:43.336 1:43.072 1:43.072 0.926
19 Axel MATUS MEX AVF By Adrian Valles 1:43.074 1:43.512 1:43.074 0.928
20 Pierre-Alexandre JEAN FRA JD Motorsport 1:43.128 1:43.298 1:43.128 0.982
21 Bent VISCAAL NED MP Motorsport 1:43.168 1:43.330 1:43.168 1.022
22 Nikita VOLEGOV RUS R-Ace GP 1:43.980 1:43.271 1:43.271 1.125
23 Thomas MAXWELL AUS Arden 1:43.328 1:43.606 1:43.328 1.182
24 Javier GONZALEZ MEX AVF By Adrian Valles 1:43.567 1:43.347 1:43.347 1.201
25 Clément NOVALAK FRA R-Ace GP 1:43.421 1:43.581 1:43.421 1.275
26 Enaam AHMED GBR Fortec Motorsports 1:43.422 1:43.747 1:43.422 1.276
27 Jamie CAROLINE GBR Tech 1 Racing 1:43.516 1:43.516 1.370
28 Jordan CANE GBR Fortec Motorsports 1:43.643 1:43.730 1:43.643 1.497
29 Juri VIPS EST Josef Kaufmann Racing 1:44.266 1:43.834 1:43.834 1.688
30 Frederik VESTI DEN Fortec Motorsports 1:44.722 1:43.946 1:43.946 1.800
31 Charles LEONG MAC Mark Burdett Motorsport 1:44.098 1:44.459 1:44.098 1.952
32 Christian RASMUSSEN DEN Mark Burdett Motorsport 1:44.128 1:44.567 1:44.128 1.982
33 Daniel LU CHN AVF By Adrian Valles 1:44.229 1:44.274 1:44.229 2.083
34 Edward JONASSON SWE JD Motorsport 1:45.007 1:44.463 1:44.463 2.317
35 Takuya OKADA JPN Mark Burdett Motorsport 1:45.204 1:44.692 1:44.692 2.546
36 Florian VENTURI FRA AVF By Adrian Valles 1:45.284 1:46.219 1:45.284 3.138

Join the discussion below in the Speedcafe.com comments section

Please note: Speedcafe.com reserves the right to remove any comment that does not follow the comment policy. For support, contact [email protected]