Esteban Gutierrez will start from pole for today's GP3 feature race in Valencia despite crashing late in qualifying this morning and forcing the session to be ended early.
The current series leader took the top spot from Status driver Robert Wickens with eight minutes remaining, and was looking to improve his time of 1m58.653s when he hit the wall at the exit of Turn 5 and damaged the rear of his car, which came to a stop in the middle of the track.
Coincidentally Wickens had done almost exactly the same thing at the same place moments before and got away with it, but Gutierrez was unable to continue and the session was red-flagged to allow his car to be recovered. With just three minutes left on the clock, there was no time for a restart.
The final grid is still to be decided as up to nine drivers could face grid penalties for setting their best times during yesterday's free practice session under yellows, although the penalties were still yet to be confirmed when qualifying got underway.
As it stands at the moment, series newcomer Roberto Merhi will start from second on the grid after crossing the line just seconds before the session was ended, relegating Wickens to third alongside Michael Christensen.
Pos Driver Team Time Gap
1. Esteban Gutierrez ART 1m58.653s
2. Roberto Merhi Atech CRS 1m58.709s + 0.056s
3. Robert Wickens Status 1m58.916s + 0.263s
4. Michael Christensen MW Arden 1m58.986s + 0.333s
5. Jean-Eric Vergne Tech 1 1m59.041s + 0.388s
6. Felipe Guimaraes Addax 1m59.076s + 0.423s
7. Nigel Melker RSC Mucke 1m59.107s + 0.454s
8. Rio Haryanto Manor 1m59.370s + 0.717s
9. Miki Monras MW Arden 1m59.385s + 0.732s
10. Stefano Coletti Tech 1 1m59.457s + 0.804s
11. Alexander Rossi ART 1m59.558s + 0.905s
12. Doru Sechelariu Tech 1 1m59.589s + 0.936s
13. Tobias Hegewald RSC Mucke 1m59.669s + 1.016s
14. Oliver Oakes Atech CRS 1m59.817s + 1.164s
15. Pal Varhaug Jenzer 1m59.855s + 1.202s
16. Pablo Sanchez Lopez Addax 1m59.868s + 1.215s
17. Josef Newgarden Carlin 1m59.946s + 1.293s
18. Nico Muller Jenzer 1m59.954s + 1.301s
19. Leonardo Cordeiro MW Arden 2m00.049s + 1.396s
20. Simon Trummer Jenzer 2m00.059s + 1.406s
21. Mirko Bortolotti Addax 2m00.070s + 1.417s
22. Dean Smith Carlin 2m00.119s + 1.466s
23. Renger van der Zande RSC Mucke 2m00.151s + 1.498s
24. Pedro Nunes ART 2m00.258s + 1.605s
25. Daniel Morad Status 2m00.413s + 1.760s
26. James Jakes Manor 2m00.542s + 1.889s
27. Adrian Quaife-Hobbs Manor 2m00.616s + 1.963s
28. Ivan Lukashevich Status 2m00.729s + 2.076s
29. Vittorio Ghirelli Atech CRS 2m00.865s + 2.212s
30. Lucas Foresti Carlin 2m00.880s + 2.227s