Racing Engineering's Fabio Leimer set the fastest time in Friday morning GP2 practice at the 3.451-mile, 21-turn Yas Marina Circuit in Abu Dhabi, ending the half-hour session just 0.158s faster than his closest challenger for the 2013 title, Russian Time's Sam Bird.

After Carlin's Jolyon Palmer set the set the initial benchmark of 1:52.949s, Bird topped the timesheets eight minutes in with a lap of 1:52.381s and duly held the position for the remainder of middle of the session before MP Motorsport's Dani Clos narrowly took the honours from Bird with ten minutes remaining. Bird went top again four minutes from the end of the session before Leimer set the best time of all with his final lap of practice. In Bird's own final effort, the Englishman decided to lift off in the final sector and duly failed to improve.

Times fell throughout the session, which was held under perfect sunny conditions and with the circuit getting quicker the more the sand was cleared off the track and new rubber laid down improving the grip for the GP2 contenders with each flying lap completed by the 26 cars on the prime medium compound Pirellis. There were a number of instances of cars spinning or going briefly off-track as they found the limits of the grip available to them, but otherwise no significant issues before the chequered flag came out, although a spat between James Calado (ART) and Tom Dillmann (Russian Time) is to be reviewed by the race stewards.

In GP3, practice honours went to MW Arden's Daniil Kvyat who pipped Carlin's Alexander Sims to the top of the times by 0.028s. Kvyat - announced last week as Daniel Ricciardo's succesor in Scuderia Toro Rosso's F1 car for 2014 - is currently in second place in the GP3 drivers championship just seven points adrift of Facu Regalia; in response, the ART driver could only manage 12th place in the practice standings on Friday morning and was 1.331s off the pace of the young Russian.

Qualifying for GP2 takes place later on Friday at 6.55pm (2.55pm GMT), while qualifying for GP3 is not until Saturday morning at 10am (6am GMT).

The 28-lap GP2 feature race will get underway at for 12.10pm (8.10am GMT) on Saturday and the 20-lap sprint race taking place at 1.15pm (9.15am GMT) on Sunday. For GP3, the first of the two 14-lap races takes place on Saturday at 6.35pm (2.35pm GMT), with race 2 set for Sunday at noon (8am GMT).

GP2 Practice times

1. #8 Fabio Leimer Racing Engineering 1:51.766s 111.160mph (10 laps)
2. #11 Sam Bird Russian Time 1:51.924s 111.003mph + 0.158s (13 laps)
3. #26 Dani Clos MP Motorsport 1:52.019s 110.909mph + 0.253s (11 laps)
4. #15 Alexander Rossi EQ8 Caterham Racing 1:52.061s 110.867mph + 0.295s (13 laps)
5. #3 James Calado ART GP 1:52.162s 110.767mph + 0.396s (11 laps)
6. #12 Tom Dillmann Russian Time 1:52.175s 110.754mph + 0.409s (12 laps)
7. #23 Jon Lancaster Hilmer Motorsport 1:52.543s 110.393mph + 0.777s (12 laps)
8. #2 St?phane Richelmi DAMS 1:52.573s 110.363mph + 0.807s (14 laps)
9. #5 Johnny Cecotto Jr. Arden 1:52.583s 110.353mph + 0.817s (12 laps)
10. #9 Felipe Nasr Carlin 1:52.697s 110.242mph + 0.931s (14 laps)
11. #24 Rene Binder Venezuela GP Lazarus 1:52.709s 110.230mph + 0.943s (14 laps)
12. #1 Marcus Ericsson DAMS 1:52.801s 110.140mph + 1.035s (13 laps)
13. #10 Jolyon Palmer Carlin 1:52.822s 110.119mph + 1.056s (14 laps)
14. #20 Nathana?l Berthon Trident Racing 1:52.853s 110.090mph + 1.087s (13 laps)
15. #16 Jake Rosenzweig Barwa Addax 1:52.870s 110.073mph + 1.104s (11 laps)
16. #7 Juli?n Leal Racing Engineering 1:52.973s 109.972mph + 1.207s (12 laps)
17. #14 Sergio Canamasas EQ8 Caterham Racing 1:53.225s 109.727mph + 1.459s (13 laps)
18. #19 Simon Trummer Rapax 1:53.383s 109.574mph + 1.617s (13 laps)
19. #4 Daniel Abt ART GP 1:53.472s 109.489mph + 1.706s (13 laps)
20. #17 Rio Haryanto Barwa Addax 1:53.552s 109.412mph + 1.786s (12 laps)
21. #22 Adrian Quaife-Hobbs Hilmer Motorsport 1:53.638s 109.329mph + 1.872s (11 laps)
22. #27 Dani?l de Jong MP Motorsport 1:53.750s 109.221mph + 1.984s (11 laps)
23. #18 Stefano Coletti Rapax 1:53.986s 108.995mph + 2.220s (10 laps)
24. #25 Vittorio Ghirelli Venezuela GP Lazarus 1:54.435s 108.567mph + 2.669s (14 laps)
25. #21 GianMarco Raimondo Trident Racing 1:55.291s 107.761mph + 3.525s (14 laps)
26. #6 Mitch Evans Arden 2:00.403s 103.186mph + 8.637s (10 laps)

Total Laps: 320

GP3 Practice times

1. #6 Daniil Kvyat MW Arden 1:57.130s 106.069mph (18 laps)
2. #9 Alexander Sims Carlin 1:57.158s 106.044mph + 0.028s (19 laps)
3. #4 Carlos Sainz Jr. MW Arden 1:57.299s 105.916mph + 0.169s (18 laps)
4. #8 Nick Yelloly Carlin 1:57.449s 105.781mph + 0.319s (19 laps)
5. #11 Patric Niederhauser Jenzer Motorsport 1:57.574s 105.669mph + 0.444s (18 laps)
6. #28 Kevin Korjus Koiranen GP 1:57.704s 105.552mph + 0.574s (18 laps)
7. #23 Giovanni Venturini Trident 1:57.849s 105.422mph + 0.719s (19 laps)
8. #27 Dean Stoneman Koiranen GP 1:58.249s 105.066mph + 1.119s (17 laps)
9. #1 Conor Daly ART 1:58.250s 105.065mph + 1.120s (17 laps)
10. #3 Jack Harvey ART 1:58.324s 104.999mph + 1.194s (17 laps)
11. #5 Robert Visoiu MW Arden 1:58.396s 104.935mph + 1.266s (18 laps)
12. #2 Facu Regalia ART 1:58.461s 104.877mph + 1.331s (16 laps)
13. #12 Alex Fontana Jenzer Motorsport 1:58.575s 104.777mph + 1.445s (18 laps)
14. #25 Emanuele Zonzini Trident 1:58.672s 104.691mph + 1.542s (18 laps)
15. #26 Patrick Kujala Koiranen GP 1:58.710s 104.658mph + 1.580s (19 laps)
16. #16 Dino Zamparelli Marussia Manor Racing 1:58.735s 104.636mph + 1.605s (19 laps)
17. #7 Luis S? Silva Carlin 1:58.793s 104.584mph + 1.663s (19 laps)
18. #14 Tio Ellinas Marussia Manor Racing 1:59.257s 104.178mph + 2.127s (18 laps)
19. #24 Robert Creegan Trident 1:59.340s 104.105mph + 2.210s (20 laps)
20. #17 Jimmy Eriksson Status GP 1:59.769s 103.732mph + 2.639s (20 laps)
21. #21 Alice Powell Bamboo Engineering 2:00.261s 103.308mph + 3.131s (20 laps)
22. #19 Josh Webster Status GP 2:00.371s 103.213mph + 3.241s (21 laps)
23. #15 Ryan Cullen Marussia Manor Racing 2:00.687s 102.943mph + 3.557s (19 laps)
24. #10 Sam?n G?mez Jenzer Motorsport 2:01.075s 102.613mph + 3.945s (20 laps)
25. #22 Carmen Jord? Bamboo Engineering 2:02.001s 101.835mph + 4.871s (17 laps)
26. #18 Adderly Fong Status GP 2:04.084s 100.125mph + 6.954s (4 laps)

Total Laps: 466

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