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Conor Daly 'likely to stick with GP3' in 2013

Conor Daly says that he expects to spend most of 2013 running a second season in the GP3 Series, rather than moving up to GP2 or over to IndyCar.
Conor Daly's managed to get himself a lot of attention and considerable praise with his activities so far in 2013, which has included an impressive maiden race weekend in the GP2 Series and confirmation that he'll be making a shot at starting the Indianapolis 500 in May with the legendary AJ Foyt's race team.

But the 21-year-old son of former F1 and Champ Car driver Derek Daly hasn't yet confirmed what the rest of his year holds for him after the Indy 500 adventure: will he stay in GP3 for a second season with the ART team, or could he be tempted to move up to GP2 full time with Hilmer Motorsport? Or will he exit the European scene altogether and pursue a career in US open wheel racing instead?

"I will most likely be racing full time in GP3 this year," he revealed this week. "I do not know at the moment if I will be doing anymore GP2 this year."

And as for the upcoming US opportunity, Daly was determined not to let it divert him from his long-term goals. "In all honesty there are no other IndyCar racing plans at the moment," he admitted.

"I still have a goal of making it to F1 and my Indy 500 plan does not hinder that goal in any way," he said, insisting that he should still be able to compete in the GP3 series despite his US commitments at Indianapolis. "In fact, I think it can only help my career. I will be learning a lot from experienced drivers and engineers which will be a great experience for me.

"I think a GP2 car is actually similar to an IndyCar," he added. "The IndyCar definitely has a bit more power than GP2 but it's also heavier than GP2. Both fantastic cars to drive. The GP2 car sounds amazing!"

Daly didn't even know he'd be competing at Malaysia until he was practically bundled into an airplane at the last minute just three days before the cars hit the track for the first time.

"It was the definition of a last minute deal but I was very happy to get the call. Very interesting deals happen in racing all the time and this was another one of them!" he laughed, adding that he didn't mind the frantic schedule in the least. "It's a great experience. I'm just happy to be driving cars. The travel and the hectic schedule are all worth it when you strap into that race car."

Considering that many of the drivers in GP2 and F1 spent months preparing for Malaysia's drainingly humid conditions, Daly did impressively well to finish in the points in the weekend's sprint race in what was also Hilmer Motorsport's d├ębut in the feeder series after the January announcement that they were taking over from Ocean Racing Technology in 2013.

Related Pictures

Click on relevant pic to enlarge
Conor Daly (USA, Hilmer Motorsport) during the first day of pre-season testing at the Circuit de Catalunya in Barcelona, Spain. Tuesday 5th March. (Photo Alastair Staley/GP2 Series Media Service)
Conor Daly (USA, Hilmer Motorsport) during the second day of pre-season testing at the Circuit de Catalunya in Barcelona, Spain. Wednesday 6th March. (Photo Credit: Alastair Staley/GP2 Series Media Service.)
Conor Daly (USA) during GP3 testing - March 2013. (Photo Credit: Malcolm Griffiths/GP3 Series Media Service.)
Conor Daly (USA, Hilmer Motorsport) in action at Sepang International Circuit, Malaysia during GP2 practice - March 22, 2013. (World Copyright: Alastair Staley/GP2 Series Media Service.)
Conor Daly (USA, Lotus GP) ahead of the GP3 sprint race at Spa - September 2012. (World Copyright: Daniel Kalisz/LAT Photographic)
Gustav Malja F2 2017
Nobuharu Matsushita - ART Grand Prix [credit: Formula 2]
Charles Leclerc - PREMA Racing
Charles Leclerc, Prema Racing, F2, Formula 2, Bahrain
Charles Leclerc - PREMA Racing
Charles Leclerc - PREMA Racing
Artem Markelov, F2, Bahrain
Artem Markelov
Norman Nato, Bahrain F2 2017, Formula 2
Charles Leclerc, Prema Racing, Formula 2, 2017
Nabil Jeffri, Team Trident [Credit: Team Trident]
Alexander Albon - ART Grand Prix [GP2 Series]
Gustav Malja - Racing Engineering [credit: GP2 Series]

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