Théo Pourchaire will start Saturday’s Formula 3 feature race from pole position after a storming lap put him over four-tenths clear of the rest of the field.

With slipstream so important around Monza, qualifying was a messy affair with traffic and drivers impeding each other as they looked to get that crucial tow.

ART Grand Prix, Prema and Trident are all under investigation collectively for impeding - which is unusual given that it is usually an individual driver, rather than a collective team that is under investigation by the stewards.

Pourchaire managed to make the most of his team-mate’s slipstream to take pole position off Lirim Zendeli by 0.451s - his first F3 pole.

Zendeli propelled himself up the order in the dying stages, nipping ahead of the second ART car of Alexander Smolyar.

Liam Lawson is set to start fourth and was responsible for the red flag period with just over eight minutes on the clock.

The session was halted with eight minutes remaining after some debris was left on the circuit at Curva Grande.

An air cooler had been left in Lawson’s car as he went out for his final laps of qualifying, with the incident being investigated by the stewards.

David Beckmann led the way after the first runs but could only manage fifth in the end, with the German complaining over team radio about a lack of tow.

Frederik Vesti was the highest of the Prema drivers in sixth, ahead of Matteo Nannini in the Jenzer Motorsport.

Jake Hughes should have been higher and was on course to take provisional pole position, but a blockage of cars at the Ascari chicane meant he had to back off and couldn’t improve his lap time meaning he will start in eighth.

Calan Williams starts ninth ahead of championship leader Logan Sargeant, who could only manage tenth.

It was a bad day for the championship rivals with Sargeant only in P10, while Oscar Piastri is set to start the race in 12th.