Team Rapax is proud to announce the agreement reached with 20-year-old Colombian Julian Leal, who will be entered in the upcoming GP2 Asia Series alongside the already-confirmed Fabio Leimer. Julian will be at his championship debut, and will be testing the new Dallara, fitted with Pirelli tires, in the upcoming free sessions starting at Abu Dhabi on February 1.
After having dominated the 2010 GP2 Series season by winning both the teams' and the drivers' championships (with Venezuelan racer Pastor Maldonado), the Rapax team will be back on-track for a 4-day test, scheduled at the Yas Marina venue and ending on February 8. With just one day of rest, the first round of the 2011 GP2 Asia Series will bring race action back on-track from February 10 to 12.
"During the last month of November, I had the chance to drive a GP2 Series Dallara at Abu Dhabi, in the latest round of collective testing, and I really enjoyed the car. Despite I was at my first laps in the championship, I clocked the 15th fastest laptime, which I consider a great starting position for a rookie. That made me eager to pick-up the challenge for the first round of the series. When I found out that ther was a chance to be on-track with Rapax I barely believed it was true. They dominated in 2010, what can I say more? I'm really happy for having had this kind of opportunity and I hope to do well though I know it won't be easy. There are a lot of drivers with many years of GP2 racing behind their shoulders, but on the other hand my goal is to improve lap-by-lap. The feedback and the results coming from the GP2 Asia Series will be key to raise my chances to enter the following Main Series. That's an additional motivation for me to be strong since the very beginning."
Andrea Bergamini, Managing Director
"We analyzed Julian's career and found out he got some really good experience in the AutoGP Championship and in the World Series Renault. Plus, in the first test he entered on a GP2 Series car, he proved able to adapt to a new car quickly, and showed a pretty professional approach. Our goal will be to provide him with the best possible chance to increase his experience, which is key in such a competitive environment like the GP2 Series. We're proud to contribute to his professional growth and I believe this will be the start of a long and valuable co-operation."