American Conor Daly is delighted to announce that he will join Lotus GP to contest the 2012 GP3 series. Daly will add to the efforts of German, Daniel Abt and Finn, Aaro Vainio, to help the black and gold team shine in the upcoming season.
Daly and Lotus GP worked together for the first time in the winter tests at Jerez de la Frontera, in December 2011, where Daly finished his day with a spot in the top ten. One week earlier, he had the best time in the tests at Valencia, once again confirming the pure speed, which he had displayed during his first year in the GP3 Series. At the most recent test with Lotus GP in Estoril, Portugal, February 21st-22nd, Daly finished fifth fastest on each of the two days. It will be Daly's second season of GP3, the official Formula One support series.
"I am very pleased to be with the Lotus GP team in 2012! The team has had an incredible history of success and has certainly been the team to beat in GP3. The goal in the off-season was to try and put myself in the best position to try and win the championship this season and I have no doubt that I've got the best chance to do so with Lotus GP. I was fortunate enough to test with the team for the first time at the end of 2011 and was extremely happy with what I was able to learn. I now look forward to learning more during pre-season testing from the team and my new teammates. I have to thank everyone who made this happen and I can't wait to get the 2012 season rolling!"
"Lotus GP closely followed Conor's progress in 2011 because he was one of our competitors in the GP3 Series. His second half of the season was marked by strong progress in his performance and his pure racing speed in particular drew our attention. During the off season and most recent tests in Estoril, we found him to be a charming young driver who is very motivated by his work and his progress in a series, which is ultra competitive. The quality of his work and his margin of progress convinced us that he is the man that Lotus GP needed to round out its 2012 line-up."
The GP3 series will compete at all European rounds of the Formula One World Championship including Monaco for the first time ever. It will run from May until September starting in Barcelona, Spain, May 12th/13th and ending in Monza, Italy, September 8th/9th. Each weekend will feature two races, one on Saturday afternoon after Formula One qualifying and one on Sunday morning.
Conor Daly, son of former Formula One driver, Derek Daly, is the 2010 Star Mazda Champion. Daly won the 2008 FF 1600 Walter Hayes Trophy and the Skip Barber National Championship. Daly is sponsored by: Callcap, The College Network and Merchant Services Ltd., with additional support from, Alpinestars, Tom Lange Co., Aria Helmets and Aspin Group.
ART Grand Prix (now re-branded as Lotus GP) was founded in the winter of 2004/2005 by Frédéric Vasseur and Nicolas Todt. It is regarded as the best junior formula team in Europe. Lotus Grand Prix competes in both GP3 and GP2. Past team drivers have included; Lewis Hamilton (F1), Nico Rosberg (F1), Sebastian Vettel (F1), Nico Hülkenberg and Paul Di Resta (F1).