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Hilmer duo completes Malaysia driver line-up

Hilmer Motorsport's drivers for this weekend's GP2 Series race in Malaysia have been revealed, which completes the line-up for the 2013 season opener.
New GP2 Series team Hilmer Motorsports heads into its first-ever race of the championship with Conor Daly and Pal Varhaug as their drives for the 2013 season opener at Sepang International Circuit in Malaysia.

The names of both drivers were finally disclosed by the official event entry list, which placed Norway's Varhaug in the Hilmer #22 entry and young American racer Conor Daly in the #23.

Both drivers had earlier spilled the beans with postings on the social media network Twitter over the last three days, which had revealed that both were flying to Malaysia and would be in action in GP2 this weekend.

"I will be traveling to Malaysia in some hours. Will be awesome to start on the grid again in GP2 again," wrote Varhaug late on Monday, with his tweets after landing reporting that it was "crazy hot" in Kuala Lumpur.

"Just booked a flight to Malaysia leaving tomorrow," Daly had posted an hour earlier. "So stoked [to] get in GP2 wagon again." With only one team still with unconfirmed race seats, there was little doubt which team they would be working with. On Thursday morning, Daly added: "It looks to be more official now that I see my name on the Hilmer Motorsports #22 car! Getting prepped here on the surface of the sun."

The news was subsequently endorsed by the GP2 Series' official Twitter feed, although there was no immediate formal press release from the team itself, or any further indication about whether the two drivers were running with the team just for Malaysia, or if they had secured a longer full-season deal in the feeder series.

Daly, 21, had already joined Hilmer for two days of testing in the pre-season session at the rain-hit Circuit de Catalunya at the start of March, and even returned at short notice on the afternoon of the third day of the test to benefit from the chance of some dry track conditions. He is the son of Irish former F1 and Champ Car driver Derek Daly, and has spent the last two seasons competing in GP3 with Carlin and Lotus GP. Although he finished sixth in the 2012 GP3 championship and took a race win in Spain, he's currently best remembered for a scary incident last year at Monaco which saw his car launched through the air over the back of Dmitry Suranovich's damaged car and into the catchfence, which caused the sprint race to be red flagged.

Malaysia will be Daly's - and Hilmer Motorsport's - d├ębut in GP2 competition. The German-based team took over from Ocean Racing Technology in mid-January, after Ocean had been forced to pull out of the competition due to a lack of funds forthcoming from financial partners that included the Portuguese government.

Pal Varhaug had also worked with Hilmer in the pre-season tests at Barcelona, and he already has a full season of experience in GP2 under his belt. He is making a return to the series after a year away in the Auto GP World Series in 2012, in which he finished as the championship runner-up to Adrian Quaife-Hobbs - who is himself making the move to GP2 this season with another new squad on the grid, MP Motorsport, which replaces Scuderia Coloni on the 2013 grid.



Related Pictures

Click on relevant pic to enlarge
Conor Daly (USA, Lotus GP) in Monza - September 2012 (World Copyright: Daniel Kalisz/LAT Photographic)
Conor Daly (USA, Lotus GP) during GP3 qualifying at Monza - September 2012. (World Copyright: Alastair Staley/LAT Photographic)
Pal Varhaug (NOR, Hilmer Motorsport) during GP2 testing at Jerez - February 2013. (Photo Credit: Alastair Staley/GP2 Series Media Service.)
Pal Varhaug (NOR, Hilmer Motorsport) during the third day of pre-season testing at the Circuit de Catalunya in Barcelona, Spain. Thursday 7th March. (Photo Credit: Alastair Staley/GP2 Series Media Service.)
Pal Varhaug (NOR, iSport International) during GP2 testing at Barcelona - October 2012. (Photo: Alastair Staley/GP2 Series Media Service.)
Conor Daly (USA) during GP3 testing - March 2013. (Photo Credit: Malcolm Griffiths/GP3 Series Media Service.)
Kevin Ceccon (ITA, Jenzer Motorsport) during practice at Autodromo di Monza, Monza, Italy. 6th September. Friday 5 September 2014. (Photo: Sam Bloxham/GP2 Series Media Service.)
Daniel Abt (GER, Hilmer Motorsport), leads Jolyon Palmer (GBR, DAMS), Felipe Nasr (BRA, Carlin) & Artem Markelov (RUS, RT RUSSIAN TIME) at the start at Spa-Francorchamps, Spa, Belgium. Sunday 24 August 2014. (Photo: Sam Bloxham/GP2 Series Media Service.)
Jon Lancaster (GBR) Hilmer Motorsport
Jon Lancaster (GBR) Hilmer Motorsport
Jon Lancaster (GBR) Hilmer Motorsport
Jon Lancaster (GBR) Hilmer Motorsport
Jon Lancaster (GBR) Hilmer Motorsport
Jon Lancaster (GBR) Hilmer Motorsport
Jon Lancaster (GBR) Hilmer Motorsport
Jon Lancaster (GBR) Hilmer Motorsport
Jon Lancaster (GBR) Hilmer Motorsport
Daniel de Jong (NED) MP Motorsport

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