Crash.Net GP2 News
Teams head for last test of 2012
21 November 2012
The final official activity of the 2012 GP2 calendar will take place this year at Jerez in Spain on Thursday and Friday, in the second and last two-day post-season test session for the teams.
It's an opportunity for the GP2 squads to get some development work in on various set-up options, and also to continue evaluating possible driving talent as they mull over who to sign up for the 2013 campaign.
Among the drivers confirmed for this week's test are Nigel Melker, René Binder and Fabio Leimer who will all have an opportunity for track time with Racing Engineering. Dutch racer Melker will be at work with the squad on both days, while Binder will turn out on the Thursday and Leimer will take over on the Friday.
Melker has just completed his first season in GP2 with Ocean Racing Technology, while Austrian teenager Binder competed in the last three races of the GP2 season with Venezuela GP Lazarus. Swiss driver Leimer was Racing Engineering's lead driver in 2012 and finished the year in seventh place in the championship with six podium places over the course of the 24 race.
Meanwhile Caterham Racing will stick with just two drivers for this weeks test, with American driver Alexander Rossi joined at Jerez by Switzerland's Simon Trummer.
"We are absolutely delighted to have Simon joining us for the Jerez test," said Caterham's team manager Phill Spencer. "He has shown consistent pace in his first season of GP2 [with Arden] and has steadily improved throughout the season and we look forward to working with him and helping him move towards the next step in his career.”
"I'm really happy to get this chance to test with such a professional team as Caterham Racing and after one season in GP2 I am sure that this will help me move forwards as a driver,' said Trummer. "Working with different people in a new team will also be a new experience for me and I am really looking forward to the two day test in Jerez and driving the Caterham Racing car!"
Johnny Cecotto Jr. will run with the Arden team on Friday, having spent the 2012 season racing for Barwa Addax.
"I was very happy to receive the call from Arden to test for them because they have a great season behind them this year and I think they are highly professional," said Ceotto. "I'm very eager to see the potential of the car and have a good day of testing together."
The newly crowned Formula 3 Euro Series champion Daniel Juncadella will be testing with Rapax. The 21-year-old said that he was hopeful that he'd be able to announce his racing plans for 2013 in the near future. At Jerez, he'll be working alongside the team's already-confirmed 2013 driver Stefano Coletti.
The championship-winning DAMS team will be working with four drivers at Jerez, with Marcus Ericsson, Rio Haryanto, Stéphane Richelmi and GP3 champion Mitch Evans all scheduled to test with the team. Evans will spend the other day of the test with Arden; Britain's Auto GP champion Adrian Quaife-Hobbs will also be testing with Arden at Jerez, while this year's GP3 runner-up Daniel Abt will turn out for Lotus GP.
The first two-day post-season test was held at the Circuit de Catalunya in Barcelona, Spain three weeks ago. The departing Scudieria Coloni set the fastest time of the session thanks to series veteran Luca Filippi's flying lap on the morning of day one, after the second day was hit by rain.
Filippi's team mate for the day Daniël de Jong went on to set the fastest time of the afternoon session, while on the second day Facundo Regalia put in the best time in the wet conditions in the morning and Caterham's Alexander Rossi benefitted from drying conditions near the end of the day to go top.
"I'm really looking forward to picking up where we left off in Barcelona as the quickest car," said Rossi ahead of this week's Jerez session. "Learning more about how to get the best out the whole package, and further develop my relationship with the whole team."
Rossi recently missed out on his hoped-for F1 free practice début at the United States Grand Prix with Caterham's Grand Prix operation, but did take part in the F1 young driver test in Abu Dhabi with the team.
Full times from October 30
Full times from October 31