Sowery eyeing Carlin's Li after claiming Cup 07 Class poles

Despite securing two Cup 07 Class poles ahead of his closest rival Tristan Cliffe for seven and eight at Spa-Francorchamps, Toby Sowery couldn’t hide his disappointment of losing out on the outright pole to Carlin’s Invitational Class runner Peter Li Zhi Cong.

Despite securing two Cup 07 Class poles ahead of his closest rival Tristan Cliffe for rounds seven and eight at Spa-Francorchamps, Toby Sowery couldn't hide his disappointment of losing out on the outright pole to Carlin's Invitational Class runner Peter Li Zhi Cong.

Sowery, racing in a Lanan Racing-prepared Dallara F305, missed out on the feather in his cap of beating Li, who's in much newer machinery, by a mere 0.077s in the first session, and later just under one second.

The morning's time was just five-tenths shy of Alex Lynn's pole lap from F3 Cup's last visit to Spa in 2012, and two-tenths quicker than Lynn managed in the race.

"So far we had been close," Sowery said, "but for the second qualifying we changed a lot of our set-up and it seems to have been for the worst. It really didn't work for us so instead of being less than a tenth off him, we're nearly a second. They were new tyres so it's just aero, which seemed to have the opposite effect to what we thought. We're going back to what we know for the races."

It's the 17-year-old's first visit to Spa, and it will be a first rolling start since his karting days when the lights go out on Saturday for round seven.

He said "It's going to be different. I'm used to rolling starts from karting but with that you have plastic pods all around you so you can do what you want. With F3s it's a whole different ball game because I'll need to be cautious as well as conscious to attack. It will be interesting to see how it all plays out."

While qualifying was played out in sunny conditions, rain has threatened almost as soon as each session ended. With rain expected during the weekend, Sowery would rather Spa's infamous rains stayed away.

"You can't change it, we'll prepare as well as we can and hope it's dry. Looking at the records it will rain, fingers crossed it will hold off." Sowery added.

Sowery lines up beside Li on Saturday for round seven at 11:45 on Saturday 28 June and round eight at 10:50 on Sunday 29 June. 

Follow @F3Cup for live updates throughout the weekend.

Photo credit Andrew Cliffe/Norwich Photo