British driver Oliver Turvey has already completed a full season in both the GP2 Asia and the GP2 main series with iSport International in the last year, finishing sixth in both championships in campaigns that saw him win last season's second GP2 Asia feature race at Abu Dhabi.
He is now a development driver with the McLaren Mercedes Formula 1 team, and took part in the F1 young drivers test for the team at Abu Dhabi last November where he set the second fastest time.
"With one win, five podiums and one pole position, Olivier Turvey is one of the most competitive drivers GP2 has seen since 2009," said the Ocean Racing Technology team in its press release announcing the signings.
"I am very happy that, with my management, we have reached an agreement with Ocean," the 23-year old said. "I feel totally ready and completely prepared for the challenge we have to face and I have big ambitions. I always race to win and I think we have everything we need to be competitive."
Turvey's 2011 plans had been in doubt after financial backing from the Racing Steps Foundation ended last year, leaving him seeking an estimated £2m
in funding to secure a drive this year.
Alongside Turvey at Ocean will be series newcomer Andrea Caldarelli. The 20-year-old Italian is a graduate of series including Italian Formula 3, in which he achieved three race wins, five podiums and two pole positions in 2010 and finished the championship in third place. Caldarelli also took part in the GP2 tests at Abu Dhabi in November, and finished in the top six.
"I am very happy and above all very motivated to race in the GP2 Asia Series with Ocean Racing Technology," he said. "I am certain that after the four days of tests ahead of us I will be very familiar with the team and its operating methods."
Although not currently signed beyond the GP2 Asia series, part of both drivers' roles and responsibilities will be to develop the new car for the main series starting in May, and team co-owner Tiago Monteiro (himself an F1 driver in 2005/6 with Jordan and its successor, and currently still racing in the World Touring Car Championship) was quick to call Turvey and Caldarelli "the best two drivers of the up-and-coming generation."
"With Oliver and Andrea, we will have the ideal driver package," said Monteiro. "The GP2 Series are becoming more and more competitive and tests will be crucial because we will have to learn to get to know the new car and develop it with an eye toward the GP2 Main Series."
The first GP2 Asia race will be held at the Yas Marina circuit in Abu Dhabi on February 11.