The 2013 GP2 Series season returns to action this week at Circuit de Catalunya in Spain for Round 3. It will be the first European round of the year. Teams and drivers are eager to show their potential on a track they know by heart having tested there during the pre-season.
After two rounds, Stefano Coletti leads the Series having notably pocketed four podiums in four races, but Fabio Leimer has also impressed with two feature race wins and a pole position. Behind the talented pair, Felipe Nasr lies in third in the drivers’ standings having scored twelve points in all four races. The Brazilian’s consistency and tenacity coupled have paid off big…although not big enough by Nasr’s standards: he will once again be hunting down his maiden GP2 win this weekend in Spain. It was returnee Sam Bird who enjoyed a victory with the smallest of margins (0.08s) ahead of Nasr in Sakhir’s Sprint Race. The Brit’s accomplishment offered newbies RUSSIAN TIME their very first GP2 win.
The Spaniard track’s characteristics take in high lateral energy loadings. Along with potentially warm ambient temperatures, these circuit’s features called for Pirelli to nominate once again the hard and soft compounds as they did in the first two previous rounds.
Pirelli’s racing manager Mario said: “We are sticking with the same nomination that we had in Malaysia and Bahrain: in fact Barcelona has a few points in common with these two circuits when it comes to the way that the tyres are used. Degradation is reasonably high, but all the teams have plenty of historical data from Barcelona, which should be useful when it comes to planning a good race strategy. We saw a variety of different strategies at work during the first two races of the year, so we’d expect the same again this weekend.”
There will be a new face in the paddock this week as Jon Lancaster joins Hilmer Motorsport for Round 3. The Brit’ replaces Pal Varhaug in car 23.