Czech hero Martin Sonka made a statement in Free Practice 3 this afternoon when he smashed the track record and set a marker for everyone to beat.
No other Master Class pilot could come close to Sonka's sensationally fast time of 1:06.223. Nicolas Ivanoff looked the most threatening, but even his time was 1.178s behind Sonka, who is sitting joint second in the championship standings.
Matt Hall, will be pleased with his time of 1:08.037, which was fast enough to see him place third on the FP3 timesheet. He is constantly improving as he gets more comfortable with his new raceplane. Juan Velarde was just behind the Australian in fourth.
Mikael Brageot, was fifth on the timesheet even though he collected a one second penalty for insufficient smoke. Just behind Brageot was current World Champion Matthias Dolderer, who was nearly two seconds off the pace.
Yoshihide Muroya, who was unable to fly yesterday due to technical issues with his raceplane, was pleased to get back out in the track today. Despite a lack of track time he set a 1:08.539, which was enough to see him finish seventh.
Cristian Bolton was another pilot that had to wait until today to test out the conditions above the Douro and the methodical Chilean saw his time of 1:13.664 only quick enough for 13th.
Current championship leader Kirby Chambliss finished in eighth, 2.720s behind Sonka. Chambliss will be disappointed, but has time to sit with his tactician, Paulo Iscold and find out where he can improve.
You can follow all the Qualifying action, right HERE!
Master Class Free Practice 3 results