T-Sport’s Menasheh Idafar thoroughly enjoyed his maiden experience of the Spa-Francorchamps circuit today, Thursday, 29th July, after making a consistently smooth start to the sixth event of the 2010 Cooper Tires British Formula 3 International Series at the world-renowned Belgian venue.

Both of today’s officially timed test sessions went well for the 19-year-old as he led the way in the National Class. During the wet morning run on the spectacular 4.35-mile track, Menasheh lapped with a best time of 2m41.467 seconds to head chief rival James Cole by more than two seconds.

Conditions dried towards the end of the afternoon outing, which resulted in an obvious reduction in lap times, and the British-born Bahraini posted a quickest of 2m25.950 seconds. Any comparison with Cole wasn’t possible though as he had to contend with driveshaft-related problems.

“It’s been a good day really, the weather was pretty crazy but it did dry out towards the end of the afternoon session so we had a run on slick tyres as well as wets”, said Menasheh, “It’s been a great experience so far, Spa is an amazing track – it’s unreal!”

Running in support of the prestigious 24 Hours of Spa event and also the latest round of the FIA GT1 World Championship this weekend, the race meeting marks the final European outing of the year for the British F3 regulars and is also the first of three back-to-back weekends of competition.

Spa-Francorchamps qualifying is set to take place at 09.00 (local time) tomorrow, Friday, 30th July, with round 16 of the 2010 Cooper Tires British F3 International Series commencing at around 12.25 and round 17 getting underway at 17.40. Round 18 is scheduled to follow on Saturday, 31st July, at approximately 13.35.

2010 Cooper Tires British F3 International Series ‘National Class’ standings:
1st James Cole, 208pts; 2nd Menasheh Idafar, 203pts

Photo by Jakob Ebrey Photography.