Marussia Manor Racing GP3 Back In Action In Spain
The Marussia Manor Racing GP3 team have been back in action at the Circuit de Catalunya in Spain this week taking part in the second pre-season test of the GP3 Series (12-13 March).
It was a further chance for this year’s driver line-up of Russia’s Dmitry Suranovich, Cypriot Tio Ellinas and Brazilian Fabiano Machado to prepare for the season with their new team. There were 23 other drivers on track during the two-day test at the track that will host this year’s European season-opener in May.
Day one got underway in cool conditions, although Tio Ellinas took the opportunity to shine by jumping to 2nd position by mid-morning, just 0.124s off the fastest lap. As the temperatures rose in the afternoon session, so did Tio’s form, as he shot to P1 in the closing minutes of the session, sealing a very positive outing for the Cypriot. Dmitry ended the two day one sessions in 19th and 21st positions respectively having posted a very solid 60 laps. Fabiano progressed from 21st in the morning to 17th in the afternoon, after an impressive 69 laps, 42 of which were in the afternoon session.
Day two saw another big improvement for the Marussia Manor Racing GP3 drivers. In the morning, Tio, Dmitry and Fabiano were much more closely matched in the timesheets, ending the session in 13th, 15th and 19th positions respectively. In the afternoon Tio impressed again by soaring to P2 in the timesheets before ending the day in 3rd place, from Fabiano in 10th and 13th positions respectively.
“It has been a very positive test here in Spain for me and I’m very pleased with my progress. It’s good to be trading places near the top of the times. I’m looking forward to the final test at Silverstone now and then getting the season started in May.”
“I have made a good improvement during the test and the second day was better for me. I’m working well with the team and making the most of the pre-season testing, getting some good mileage and preparing for the racing.”
“Another good test with my new team and I was happy to end the second day in 10th place. One more test in April and then time to get the season started.”
Pete Sliwinski, Team Principal
“We’ve had another very good programme here in Barcelona as we prepare for the start of the season. It seems a long way off now but it will come around very quickly I’m sure and that’s why it is so important to get the mileage in and to give Tio, Dmitry and Fabiano as much experience of the cars as possible. Tio has done a very good job over the past two days but there have been positive signs from all three drivers. It’s early days yet but there is a good energy about us and I’m pleased with how we’re progressing.”