Antonio Felix da Costa led the way in the first Formula Renault 3.5 free practice session of the weekend at Silverstone.
The Red Bull-backed driver went to the top of the times just two minutes from the end, deposing Ferrari junior Jules Bianchi to lead the way. Bianchi had been fastest for nearly half of the session up to that point, but as one of several drivers not to improve in the latter stages he had to make do with second.
Next up was Nico Muller, who joined da Costa in jumping up the order just before the checkered flag came out. The late improvements knocked former champion Mikhail Aleshin down from second to fourth.
While some drivers opted to use a second set of tyres late in the session, championship leader Robin Frijns was able to improve on his original set in the final seconds to take fifth, while Kevin Magnussen completed the top six.
In a relatively uneventful session, Bianchi's Tech 1 team-mate Kevin Korjus was one of the few to have any major dramas, as he brought his session to an early end by damaging his car with a small off. The session also marked the first chance for two replacement drivers to get to grips with the 2012 FR 3.5 machinery.
GP2 racer Nigel Melker (replacing Cesar Ramos as the latest stand-in for Richie Stanaway at Lotus) was 14th, while series returnee Daniel Zampieri, who is back with his 2011 team BVM Target, was 23rd.
Pos Driver Team Time Gap
1. Antonto Felix da Costa Arden Caterham 1m41.841s
2. Jules Bianchi Tech 1 1m41.946s + 0.105s
3. Nico Muller Draco 1m42.089s + 0.248s
4. Mikhail Aleshin RFR 1m42.093s + 0.252s
5. Robin Frijns Fortec 1m42.122s + 0.281s
6. Kevin Magnussen Carlin 1m42.219s + 0.378s
7. Marco Sorensen Lotus 1m42.336s + 0.495s
8. Will Stevens Carlin 1m42.488s + 0.647s
9. Sam Bird ISR 1m42.919s + 1.078s
10. Andre Negrao Draco 1m42.948s + 1.107s
11. Nick Yelloly Comtec 1m42.984s + 1.143s
12. Carlos Huertas Fortec 1m43.011s + 1.170s
13. Walter Grubmuller P1 1m43.049s + 1.208s
14. Nigel Melker Lotus 1m43.297s + 1.456s
15. Daniil Move P1 1m43.551s + 1.710s
16. Kevin Korjus Tech 1 1m43.671s + 1.830s
17. Lucas Foresti DAMS 1m43.825s + 1.984s
18. Arthur Pic DAMS 1m43.845s + 2.004s
19. Nikolay Martsenko BVM Target 1m43.955s + 2.114s
20. Vittorio Ghirelli Comtec 1m43.969s + 2.128s
21. Yann Cunha Pons 1m44.074s + 2.233s
22. Jake Rosenzweig ISR 1m44.094s + 2.253s
23. Daniel Zampieri BVM Traget 1m44.167s + 2.326s
24. Anton Nebylitskiy RFR 1m44.168s + 2.327s
25. Alexander Rossi Arden Caterham 1m44.169s + 2.328s
26. Zoel Amberg Pons 1m44.621s + 2.780s