Matthieu Vaxiviere has completely dominated day one of the second pre-season Formula Renault 3.5 test after topping the timesheets in both sessions in Aragon.

The Lotus driver set the time to beat in the morning with a 1m 41.331s and was able to shave seventh-tenths of second off in the afternoon, ending the day with a 1m 40.635s, streets ahead of his FR3.5 rivals.

Last year's GP3 runner-up Dean Stoneman came the closest to beating the Frenchman with a 1m 41.152s as he got to grips with the new series. The Briton appears to have bounced back after suffering a horrendous crash at the first pre-season test in Jerez, consistently lapping at the sharp end of the grid throughout the day.

Manor Formula 1 driver Roberto Merhi made a global dash to get it to the Aragon test on time after finishing his debut F1 Grand Prix in Sepang, Malaysia just 24 hours prior to getting into his Pons Racing car in Spain.

Merhi was briefly as the drivers remerged from the pits at the start of the afternoon session, until Tom Dillmann held top spot with a 1m 41.663s for the middle chunk of the afternoon.

However, with under an hour remaining in the day Vaxiviere reclaimed top spot with a near-identical time to his morning effort, while Stoneman followed close behind. Aurelien Panis briefly held up the session after stopping out on track with 20 minutes left but once his car was cleared Vaxiviere grabbed some clear track and set the fastest lap of the day minutes before the chequered flag appeared.

Russian driver Egor Orudzhev ended the day third with Jazeman Jaafar fourth, while the quickest driver at the Jerez test Tio Ellinas finished fifth. Tom Dillmann finished seventh and Vaxiviere's Lotus team-mate Meindert Van Burren grabbed eighth.

Oliver Rowland's morning run of 1m 41.562s was enough to see him P9 and Bruno Bonifacio completed the top ten.

The test resumes tomorrow for a second of final day in Aragon, which also hosts the Formula Renault 3.5 season opener on the 25-26 April.



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