Enaam Ahmed set the fastest time for a Euroformula Open car around Silverstone in Friday’s free practice sessions, marking a successful return to the championship for the Briton.
Three years ago, Ahmed had a successful half-season in Euroformula and used that experience to become a winner in Formula 3 across the globe.
He’s returned to the championship with Motopark, which is running a completely refreshed line-up this weekend with Ahmed, Cameron Das, Red Bull junior Dennis Hauger, Niklas Krutten and Toshiki Oyu.
Honda junior Oyu belied his lack of circuit knowledge to top the first practice session in the cooler conditions of the morning by 0.132 seconds from Carlin’s Nicolai Kjaergaard. For much of the time, top spot had been fought over by BRDC British F3 champions Ahmed and Linus Lundqvist (Double R Racing) before Oyu put in some late flying laps.
The sun came out in time for the second session in the afternoon, where Ahmed and Lundqvist once again did battle, Carlin looked particularly strong with its trio of Kjaergaard, Christian Hahn and home hero Billy Monger, and Oyu left it late before setting his fastest laps. This time Ahmed did take top spot, with Oyu, Das and Kjaergaard completing a close top four covered by just 0.194s.
Lundgaard was fifth, although could have fell behind Teo Martín Motorsport’s Lukas Dunner had the Austrian not run out of fuel at the end. At his home track, Monger was seventh on the timesheet and head of his team-mate Hahn.
In addition to Oyu, two other championship debutants made the top 10. Norwegian teenager Hauger was ninth fastest, with British F3 graduate Manuel Maldonado - also a cousin of 2012 Spanish Grand Prix winner Pastor - in 10th. Krutten ended his first day in a F3 car in 11th, little over a second off the pace.
W Series champion Jamie Chadwick joined Double R for free practice and overcame a seat problem to impress at her home venue, while Welsh team CF Racing returned to the championship with British club racing star Stuart Wiltshire.