GP2 series finishes first winter test

The GP2 series has conducted its first official winter test at Circuit Paul Ricard HTTT in the south of France. All 12 teams were in attendance, and alongside some of 2005's well known faces, there were 16 drivers making their debuts in the series. Their number included champions and race winners from some of Europe's most competitive junior racing formulas, each of whom was eager to make the first step up the ladder to the GP2 series.

The two-day test saw four half-day sessions on the 3.853km "3D" track solution, with Nelson Piquet Jr topping the time sheets in the first session for Hitech Piquet Sports. The afternoon's test saw another 2005 GP2 series race-winner leading the way, as Jose Maria Lopez finished top of the pile driving for ART Grand Prix. On day two, the clear skies of the previous day disappeared behind clouds and wind. In the colder conditions, it was new-boy Adrian Valles who led the first session for BCN Competicion, before Nelson closed the test at the top of the table, where he had started on Tuesday. He set the fastest lap of the test on the final afternoon, with a 1:15.565.

<pre> GP2 Series Winter Test Times: October 11-12, Circuit Paul Ricard

Pos     Driver          Nat     Team                            Best Lap
1       N. Piquet       BRA     Hitech Piquet Sports            1:15.565
2       J.M. Lopez      ARG     ART Grand Prix                  1:16.047
3       G. Bruni        ITA     Durango                         1:16.077
4       F. Perera       FRA     ART Grand Prix                  1:16.243
5       A. Valles       ESP     BCN Competicion                 1:16.378
6       A. Parente      POR     iSport International            1:16.478
7       O. Pla          FRA     DPR                             1:16.499
8       R. Kubica       POL     Durango                         1:16.517
9       A. Zuber        AUT     iSport International            1:16.568
10      C. Piccione     MC      DPR                             1:16.601
11      E. Viso         VEN     Coloni Motorsport               1:16.631
12      L. Filippi      ITA     Coloni Motorsport               1:16.698
13      T. Kostka       CZ      ART Grand Prix                  1:16.704
14      M. Ammermuller  GER     Arden Internatonal              1:16.720
15      N. Lapierre     FRA     Arden Internatonal              1:16.727
16      L. Di Grassi    BRA     DAMS                            1:16.814
17      F. Fauzy        MAL     Super Nova International        1:16.885
18      R. Kubica       POL     Super Nova International        1:16.886
19      H. Yoshimoto    JPN     Arden Internatonal              1:16.957
20      A. Garcia       ESP     Campos Racing                   1:16.981
21      A. Negrao       BRA     Hitech Piquet Sports            1:16.998
22      H. Yoshimoto    JPN     DPR                             1:17.045
23      A. Parente      POR     DAMS                            1:17.211
24      G. Mondini      ITA     Durango                         1:17.212
25      H. Shimoda      JPN     iSport International            1:17.299
26      J. Rossiter     GBR     DAMS                            1:17.390
27      J. Villa        ESP     Racing Engineering              1:17.473
28      C. Piccione     MC      Arden International             1:17.626
29      A. Barba        ESP     Campos Racing                   1:17.767
30      G. Van de Garde BEL     DAMS                            1:17.905
31      R. Rodriguez    ESP     Campos Racing                   1:18.431
32      A. Nunez        ESP     Racing Engineering              1:18.480