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Martinez tops Hungary practice

1 January 1901

Fresh from a career best performance last time out at Silverstone, Marcos Martinez showed his recent form is far from a fluke after topping the timesheets in final practice for the World Series by Renault at the Hungaroring.

The only driver to dip below the 1min 33secs marker all day, Martinez's time came with one of the final laps in the afternoon session, and goes some way to reinforcing his run to second place at Silverstone.

Even so, the Spaniard's impression on proceedings certainly caused a small surprise given he had been languishing well outside the top ten for much of the weekend so far.

Indeed, the free practice sessions threw up a number of unusual faces at the front of the field, not least Alexandre Marsoin, who emerged second best overall having led the way in morning testing.

The young Frenchman has just one point to his name so far this year and has qualified no higher than 17th, but the Epsilon Euskadi driver looked in good shape around the twisty Hungarian circuit to end the day as a frontrunner.

Miguel Molina provided some familiarity with the third fastest time of the day, although the Spaniard did end up in the gravel trap in the afternoon after pushing his Prema Powerteam car a little too hard over the kerbs.

Silverstone winner Robert Wickens kept up his good form with the fourth best time, although only after he languished outside the top ten in the morning session. The same could be said of championship leader Giedo van der Garde, who was 18th fastest early today before eventually improving fifth overall.

Julien Jousse was sixth fastest, ahead of Bertrand Baguette in the leading Draco entry, while Esteban Guerrieri, Charles Pic and Fairuz Fauzy rounded out the top ten positions.

Elsewhere, James Walker ended the day with 14th fastest time of the day, while Pippa Mann was 16th best, although the P1 Motorsport driver will be buoyed to have run inside the top ten in the morning session. The third Brit on the grid, Duncan Tappy, was 23rd.