Julian Leal will be one of Carlin's two drivers for the 2014 GP2 Series, the team announced on Thursday.

"We're delighted that Julian is joining our GP2 team for the 2014 season," said team CEO Trevor Carlin. " He is a very experienced driver and will bring a lot to the team. We can't wait to get back on track in March and build on the fantastic progress we made in 2013."

The 23-year-old Colombian is already a veteran of three seasons in the feeder series, having made his d?but in Turkey with Rapax in 2011 and then having follow-up seasons with Trident and last year with Racing Engineering alongside eventual GP2 champion Fabio Leimer.

"I'm delighted to be racing with Carlin this season", said Leal. "The team were very impressive last year and have a great reputation."

Last year Leal claimed his first podium positions in the championship, with a second place in the Spa sprint race quickly followed by third place two weeks later in the Monza sprint as well. Earlier in the season he also set the fastest laps in the feature races in Bahrain and at the Nurburgring.

As well as his GP2 experience, Leal has also competed in the AutoGP World Series and the Formula Renault 3.5 Series, and was the 2008 F3000 Italy champion. However, he is still completely convinced that GP2 is the right choice for him in 2014 in order to further his racing career.

"The GP2 Series remains the championship to be in, with another fantastic calendar on the F1 support package," said the driver. "Together with Carlin I think we can have a very strong season and I can't wait to get in the car in Abu Dhabi."

Leal will be driving the team's #5 car, with his team mate yet to be announced. Last year, Carlin's line-up consisted of Felipe Nasr and Jolyon Palmer, with the latter having already announced that he is moving to DAMS this season to race alongside Stephane Richelmi.

Leal will make his d?but with the British team at the first official test at the Yas Marina Circuit in Abu Dhabi from March 11-13.

At the post-season testing at the end of 2013 at the same venue, Leal tried out with Trident, Arden and Hilmer Motorsport before ultimately opting to sign up with Carlin.


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