GP2 series gears up for Round Three The GP2 series makes a welcome return to the Nurburgring this weekend for races five and six of the 2006 season. With four races and four different winners so far this season, the GP2 series is looking set for...
GP2 series gears up for Round Three
The GP2 series makes a welcome return to the Nurburgring this weekend for races five and six of the 2006 season. With four races and four different winners so far this season, the GP2 series is looking set for another ultra-competitive year, and with many pre-season favourites yet to stand on the top step of the podium this weekend should be no exception.
Get in the Ring:
They used to call the Nurburgring "The Green Hell" back in the days when the Nordschleife stretched to almost 23km. Now set at 5.148km, the Nurburgring that exists today holds less fear than the behemoth from which it was born, but it still demands the ultimate respect of everyone who turns a wheel on its undulating and challenging twists and turns.
In 2005 the GP2 series bore witness to two of its best races of the season at the Nurburgring. In Race One, Heikki Kovalainen made use of some cunning Arden International tactics and slick pit work to win from 17th on the grid, while Race Two brought plaudits from everyone who had sat open-mouthed, glued to the television screens as Clivio Piccione took victory in what was easily the race of the year. The final nine laps of that race will live long in the memory of anyone who saw it, as the lead six cars swarmed all over each other, with position changing corner by corner.
After four sensational races in 2006 at tracks not traditionally known for their overtaking possibilities, one can only wonder at what we will have in store this weekend at a track that has already proven itself as a marvelous venue for racing in the GP2 series.
What about the championship?
Nelson Piquet Jr leads the early GP2 series drivers' championship table on 25 points, having scored in every race contested thus far in 2006. The Brazilian will be hoping to continue his fine early run of form this weekend, as his rivals are hot on his heels. Gimmi Bruni is his closest challenger at present, sitting on 18 points after a great first race in Imola which saw the Italian give his Trident Racing team their first ever victory in the GP2 series in only their second weekend of competition.
Ernesto Viso is third in the championship for iSport International after taking his and iSport's first GP2 series win in the second race in Imola. The Venezuelan is level on 16 points with the two Arden International drivers Nicolas Lapierre and Michael Ammermuller. Lewis Hamilton is sixth for ART Grand Prix on nine points, with Campos Racing's Adrian Valles seventh on six points. The top ten is rounded out by the BCN pairing of Hiroki Yoshimoto and Timo Glock, and ART Grand Prix's Alex Premat who all have five points.
In the teams' battle, Arden International sits on top of the standings on 32 points, with Piquet Sports second on 25. Trident Racing is the surprise package of the season to date in third on 18 points, ahead of iSport International on 16, ART Grand Prix on 14, and BCN Competicion sixth on 10 points. Campos Racing is seventh on seven points, ahead of Super Nova International on four and FMS International ninth, and the final points scoring team, with two points.