Hockenheim F3: Prema duo Ilott and Gunther share poles
Prema Formula 3 driver Callum Ilott will line up on pole position for two of the three races of the Hockenheim season finale, with teammate Maximilian Gunther heading the grid for the final race.
Ilott wrested the top spot away from champion-elect Lando Norris on the final lap of the first qualifying session by 0.161s seconds.
He then set the quickest overall time in the second qualifying session, a comfortable 0.271 seconds clear of Gunther, only for the German to edge ahead by 0.013s.
However, Gunther, Norris’s only title challenger, had been only a distant 12th in the first qualifying session.
That means Norris is almost certain to be confirmed as champion in the first race of the weekend, which Gunther needs to win with Norris outside the top eight if the title is going to remain open.
Joel Eriksson, who along with Ilott could jump Gunther for the championship runner-up position, placed his Motopark car third on the Race 1 grid with a last-lap effort.
Next up were Force India junior Jehan Daruvala and Ferdinand Habsburg, the Carlin duo showing good form and Habsburg putting in his best effort on his final lap.
In the second qualifying session, Prema's Guan Yu Zhou completed a Prema 1-2-3 behind Ilott and Gunther, both on best and second-best times.
Hitech GP’s Jake Hughes – who lost fifth on the grid in the opening session due to having his best lap taken away for exceeding track limits – put in a last-lap effort to bump Pedro Piquet from the second row.
That also meant that Hughes will start fourth for both races, but the second-best time of Piquet, who has shown a welcome improvement in form this weekend with Van Amersfoort Racing, is good only for ninth for race three.
Eriksson planted his Motopark car in sixth place for race two, and fifth for race three, and on each grid he is one place ahead of Norris.
The whole Carlin team struggled in second qualifying, with Norris the only one of its drivers in the top 10.
F4 ace Drugovich to make European F3 debut
Hockenheim F3: Eriksson wins, Norris crowned champion