STATUS GP DRIVERS TACKLE A DOWNPOUR AT SPA
The GP3 Series kicked back into life after the summer break today with practice for this weekend's two races at the famous Spa-Francorchamps circuit, and all three Status Grand Prix drivers completed the session in very wet and foggy conditions without incident.
Renowned for producing challenging weather, the 4.35-mile sweeping Belgian circuit was drenched by downpours all day, giving the Status GP drivers their second full wet session of this season's races.
With wet weather tyres as standard issue, it was Canadian driver Robert Wickens who led the way for the Status GP team. Arriving at the penultimate GP3 Series event of the season lying in a strong second in the drivers' championship, the 21-year-old ran in the top six for most of the session. However, his final two laps were impeded by spun cars causing a yellow-flag section in front of him, and in the final reckoning he was demoted down to 11th position.
Daniel Morad faced a steep learning curve as he drove at Spa for the first time, and the GMH Motorsport- backed driver did a good job to negotiate the streams of water across the circuit and maximise his track time. The Canadian-Lebanese gradually increased his speed and ended with a lap less than a second behind team-mate Wickens as he dialled his car into the circuit's 21 corners.
Marussia Motors Development driver Ivan Lukashevich also did not put a wheel wrong as he returned to Spa, where he began his racing career in the Benelux Formula Ford series. The 19-year-old from Moscow was another to have his best lap delayed by the yellows, but is confident that he can move further up the grid in tomorrow morning's all-important qualifying session.
Status Grand Prix team manager Simon Cayzer said: "We would have liked to have been quicker, but we tried a number of things on the set-up and we know what direction to head in from here. We're pleased that all three drivers negotiated a difficult session in sensible fashion, and it's qualifying tomorrow that counts."
-source: status gp